Thursday, July 2, 2009

Mother Fears Child's Birthday Celebration Will Be Lost in Sea of Celebrity Deaths

Though Piper Lee turns 11 today, a day she has been counting down for weeks, preparing her family for for months, a day marked on several calendars, chalkboards and ipod reminders, despite all that- less than 18 out of 306 million Americans will take note of the blessed birthday event.
According to recent polls, more people are interested in celebrities than their neighbors. More people scan gossip rags in the checkout line and peruse Yahoo news links on their phones than engage in lively face to face conversation with the person next to them. Sad, but true.

Last night, watching the entertainment programs before SYTYCD started, we were treated to a very lopsided celebrity death wrap up, flipping from Farrah to Michael to Karl and back to Michael and wondered if anyone remembered poor old Ed or the OxyClean dude.

For those who like their figures and percentages here's a bit from: WASHINGTON (AFP) – Nearly 2 out of 3 Americans believe the media gave too much coverage to the death of Michael Jackson and just 3 percent think it was too little, according to a survey published on Wednesday.
29 percent of the 1,000 people polled June 26-29 for the survey by the Pew Research Center for the People and the Press believe the coverage of Jackson's sudden death on Thursday at the age of 50 was the "right amount."
30 percent of those polled said they followed the coverage of Jackson's death "very closely" while 28 percent said they followed it "fairly closely."23 percent said they followed it "not too closely" and 19 percent said they followed it "not at all closely."31 percent said they followed the Jackson story more closely than any other during the week.

Pew said African Americans followed the death of Jackson more closely than the population as a whole with 8 in 10 blacks saying they followed the news of his death very closely compared with 22 percent of whites.

7 in 10 whites said there had been too much coverage compared with 36 percent of blacks.38 percent of those under the age of 40 said they followed the pop star's death very closely compared with 27 percent of those between 40 and 64 and 20 percent of those 65 and older.

The protests in Iran made up 19 percent of the news hole for the week while the Jackson story took up 18 percent, it said. However, from the time the Jackson story broke Thursday afternoon to the end of the day Friday, 60 percent of the news coverage studied was devoted to his death, Pew said. Iran coverage dropped to 7 percent of the news hole during the same period.

31 percent of those surveyed said they followed coverage of the Iranian government's crackdown on election protesters very closely.Pew said the survey of some 1,000 Americans aged 18 years older has a margin of error of plus or minus 3.5 percentage points.

And now I am 100 percent sure I am statistically brain fried.

* addendum* And now, we add another celebrity death. Rest in peace, Mrs. Slocum.

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