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Yellowstone media myths: print and television coverage of the 1988 fires

Author(s): Conrad Smith
Year Published: 1991

This paper draws on comments from 89 reporters who covered the fires, on comments from 146 of their news sources, and on evaluations of network television coverage by four groups of wildfire experts. The research also incorporates a content analysis of stories about the fires that appeared in Yellowstone-area and elite newspapers. The results suggest that reporters sometimes made serious factual errors, and often did a poor job of reporting on ecological issues and fire management policy. There were substantial differences in how the fires were covered by different news organizations.

Citation: Smith, Conrad. 1991. Yellowstone media myths: print and television coverage of the 1988 fires. In: Nodvin, Stephen C.; Waldrop, Thomas A., eds. Fire and the environment: ecological and cultural perspectives. Gen. Tech. Rep. SE-GTR-69. Asheville, NC: USDA Forest Service, Southeastern Forest Experiment Station. p. 321-327.
Topic(s): Fire Communication & Education, Public Perspectives of Fire Management
Ecosystem(s): None
Document Type: Conference Proceedings, Technical Report or White Paper
NRFSN number: 12422
FRAMES RCS number: 16147
Record updated: Sep 8, 2020