Does news coverage of crashes affect perceived blame?

January 29, 2020

Still another example: “A pedestrian was hit and killed” was changed to “A pedestrian was hit and killed by a car.”

Despite an ever-rising number of pedestrian and bicyclist deaths on U.S. roads each year, there’s no widespread public pressure to improve road safety — a situation influenced by how news articles about auto-pedestrian/bicyclist crashes are written, said Tara Goddard, Texas A&M assistant professor of urban planning.

“Given the potential to save lives and prevent injury on a large scale, implementing more intentional writing patterns may be nothing less than an ethical imperative,” said Goddard, who led the study with Rutgers colleagues Kelcie Ralph, Calvin Thigpen and Evan Iacobucci.

Texas A&M University, January 28, 2020

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