Dr. Clark's blog of the University of Central Oklahoma Department of Mass Communication History of Journalism Class

Thursday, September 8, 2016

Oklahoma and 9/11--Part 2

Here's the lead and the second column I wrote about our state coverage.
For discussion: Why did our all local news newspapers consider this "local" news?

Oklahoma weeklies covering 9/11—By Terry Clark, Nov., 2001
Few of us will ever cover a bigger story than that of Sept. 11, 2001. Daily coverage documented last month revealed a day of “Second Coming” heads and Extra editions. But you find out just how big the story is when all-local-news weeklies cover it also.
And that’s what happened, with about 135 of 170 Oklahoma weeklies devoting all or part of front pages to the terrorist attacks and the local impact. From Eldorado to Boise City, from Pitcher to Valliant, from Madill to Pond Creek, from Stigler to Sayre, Oklahomans turned to their local newspapers for coverage.
Numbers are not exact, because some weeklies had already gone to press that terrible Tuesday, and covered it a week later. But a detailed content analysis of the font pages reveals several trends and some inspiriting journalism.
The run on gas stations was the most prevalent coverage with more than 65 papers carrying photos of lines at the gas pumps as Okies panicked at rumors of gas shortages – and the photos ranged from two- to five-columns.
Next most common photo was of American flags, with at last 25 newspapers having photos of the American flag. Best …

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