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Oil Spill Coverage Trending Down

The BP Gulf oil spill was the top story among a mix of media for the
week ending July 4, but there are signs the story may be "losing some

That is according to the latest Project for Excellence
In Journalism's (PEJ) weekly news coverage index.

The story captured
15% of the news hole, but that is down from the week before, when it
had 23% for the number two spot behind the General McChrystal story. And
just the week before, the story commanded 44% of the news hole. It was
the lowest percentage of coverage since April 19-25, when the oil rig
first exploded and the underwater gusher began.

"The once-hot
political narrative--the performance of the Obama White House in the
crisis--has diminished," said
PEJ in its analysis
. And while other developments could produce a
spike in coverage, the relief well that may provide a breakthrough in
containment is not expected to be ready until August."

second biggest story (13% of the news hole) was about fears of a
fizzling economic recovery. Third, with 11%, was coverage of the Supreme
Court nomination hearings of Elena Kagan, though that was only half the
attention given to the Sonia Sotomayor confirmation hearings last year
at this time.

Number four at 8% was the story of 10 people in
the U.S. accused of being part of a Russian spy ring, while Afghanistan
was at number 5 with 5%, down from the 25% and top spot it claimed the
week before thanks to the ousting of McChrystal atop the war effort