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Summer of the Shark
The terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001, dominated world headlines. The event became the longest non-stop news coverage in American history. Since an aircraft hit the moment the first World Trade Center, millions of people began to tune in to their local news networks. Shortly after the second aircraft hit the second tower, local broadcasts were interrupted to inform Americans of the unfolding disaster. Many news stations ran around the clock coverage giving updates on every aspect of the events.
9/11 and the Summer of the Shark.
If 9/11 did not happen, the summer of the shark would have been the top story of the year. “In the year 2001, five people died in 76 shark attacks. However, just a year earlier, 12 people had died in 85 attacks. The data showed that 2001 actually was a down year for shark attacks.” (Meyer, 2012) Although the number of attacks was slightly down, but after the attack of a young boy off the Florida coast sparked interest from a journalist. “Jessie Arbogast, an eight-year-old boy who had his arm bitten off by a bull shark in July near Pensacola, Florida. He survived after his uncle wrestled the shark to shore and pulled Jessie's arm out of its gullet. The arm was surgically reattached, but Jessie sank into a coma, in which he remains, and it was the battle to save his life that first set off the interest of bored journalists looking for a summer theme.” (Cooke, 2001)
What could have been big?
One news story that could have been big if 9/11 did not happen was the anthrax scare in October 2001. The scare killed postal workers that handled the tainted letters. Letters containing deadly anthrax powder were sent to media and government officials throughout the nat...

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Cooke, M. (2001, September 4). Summer of the shark. The Guardian. Retrieved April 24, 2014, from http://www.theguardian.com/theguardian/2001/sep/05/features11.g23
Famous Cases & Criminals. (2010, May 21). FBI. Retrieved April 24, 2014, from http://www.fbi.gov/about-us/history/famous-cases/anthrax-amerithrax/amerithrax-investigation
Akin, J. (2005, March 1). Mass Media | Beyond Intractability. Mass Media | Beyond Intractability. Retrieved April 25, 2014, from http://www.beyondintractability.org/essay/mass-communication
Preston, B. (2012, October 2). A Guide to the Obama Administration’s Five Major Scandals for Mainstream Media Dummies. The PJ Tatler RSS. Retrieved April 25, 2014, from http://pjmedia.com/tatler/2012/10/02/a-guide-to-the-obama-administrations-five-major-scandals-for-mainstream-media-dummies/2/
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