Jan. 4, 2008

The Public’s Not-So-Happy New Year

Summary of Findings The American public begins the new year with a highly negative view of national conditions and tempered expectations for 2008. Half of Americans say that as far as they are concerned, 2008 will be a better year than 2007, while 34% say it will be worse. In December 2006, and in several […]

Dec. 19, 2007

What Was — and Wasn’t — On the Public’s Mind in 2007

As in previous years, public opinion played an important role in shaping many of 2007’s major news stories. This year, fewer dominant trends were carryovers from the preceding year and those that were assumed a somewhat different — and in the case of the Iraq war less pessimistic — cast. Read full analysis at Pewresearch.org

Dec. 20, 2006

What Was — and Wasn’t on the Public’s Mind

Once again, public opinion played a major role in the most important news stories of the year. Some of the strongest 2006 trends in public opinion carried over from previous years — notably growing concern about the Iraq war and mounting dissatisfaction with the performance of the Republican-controlled Congress. In the case of another continuing […]

Dec. 27, 2005

What Was – and Wasn’t on the Public’s Mind…

Public opinion played a major role in the most important news stories of the year, from President Bush’s battle with an increasingly restive opposition, to the public’s mounting anxiety about the war in Iraq, to the sharp public rebuke of Congress for its intervention in the Terry Schiavo affair. Many of the strongest trends in […]

Dec. 20, 2004

Public Opinion Little Changed by Presidential Election

Summary of Findings Six weeks after President Bush’s victory, the divisions that were so apparent in the election show no signs of narrowing. The public remains split over the president’s job performance, the situation in Iraq, and the state of the national economy. But Bush voters are upbeat on all three questions ­ 92% approve […]

Dec. 23, 2003

Iraq News Draws Most Public Attention in 2003

2003 Year End News Interest Index

Dec. 20, 2002

Sniper Attacks Draw Most Public Interest in 2002

Introduction and Summary A series of horrifying sniper attacks in the Washington, D.C. area attracted the most public interest of any news story in 2002. But the growing prospects of war with Iraq, as well as the continuing threat of terrorism and the aftermath of 9/11, also drew high levels of attention throughout the year. […]

Dec. 18, 2001

Terrorism Transforms News Interest

Introduction and Summary For the first eight months of 2001, public interest in the news was modest at best. The rising price of gas and China’s release of a detained American air crew were the only stories to attract close attention from majorities of the public. Other big stories ­ President Bush’s first year, the […]

Dec. 25, 2000

Rising Price of Gas Draws Most Public Interest in 2000

Rising Price of Gas Draws Most Public Interest in 2000 While the long and contentious election aftermath drew massive media coverage, the rising price of gasoline attracted the most public interest of any news story of 2000. In June, more than six-in-ten Americans (61%) said they paid very close attention to this story, which far […]

Dec. 28, 1999

Columbine Shooting Biggest News Draw of 1999

Introduction and Summary The murderous rampage by a pair of high school students in Littleton, Colo. attracted by far the most public interest of any news story of 1999. The widespread attention focused on the April shootings at Columbine High made it the third most closely watched story of the 1990s, according to the Pew […]

Dec. 22, 1997

High Personal Contentment, Low News Interest

Survey Findings In 1997, Americans were happier with their own lives, felt more religious conviction and were less attentive to the news than at any time in recent years. Fully 47% of Americans say that they are highly contented with their lives today, a jump of 10% points in just the last year and 9% […]

May. 17, 1997

Ten Years of the Pew News Interest Index

Survey Findings An analysis of public attentiveness to more than 500 news stories over the last ten years confirms that the American public pays relatively little attention to many of the serious news stories of the day. The major exceptions to this rule are stories dealing with natural and man-made disasters and U.S. military actions. […]

Dec. 28, 1995

Younger Americans and Women Less Informed: One In Four Americans Follow National News Closely

Summary On the occasion of our transition from Times Mirror Center for the People and the Press to the Pew Research Center, we offer an overview of what we have learned during the past five years about the news stories that are followed closely by the public and how much Americans know about current events. […]

Dec. 27, 1990

Year End Summary

Report Summary In a year that began and ended with American troops in the field, international news dominated the consciousness of Americans in 1990. In nine months of the last year, international news stories were the most closely followed news stories of the month, and throughout the entire period the public regarded international events as […]