There have been more mass shootings in the United States this year than days. Sometimes, it comes with manifestos. Other times, YouTube videos about the crimes of society, or integration.
Part of the phenomenon of mass shootings is media contagion - media attention the shooters get. In Loser #5, we discussed the media’s role in encouraging these crimes.
Dr. Jennifer B. Johnston of Western Mexico University studies media coverage of mass shootings, and says “media contagion” causes more of them.
“Unfortunately, we find that a cross-cutting trait among many profiles of mass shooters is desire for fame,” she said.
And fame they get, every time. Now there are so many mass shootings, some people have survived several of them. And every criminal needs to plan for worse and worse just to get attention at all. We don’t remember shooter names anymore unless it was really bad. That makes the incentive to kill as many people as possible to achieve the goal: fame.
Media contagion isn’t limited to mass shootings. It could happen to anyone who wanted to become famous - even for something horrible.
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