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date: 17 August 2019

Abstract and Keywords

This essay focuses on the media’s response to sex crimes, how news reporting can affect people’s perceptions of sex offenders, and how all of these issues are connected to the development of law. The rate of sex crimes has been steadily declining for the past 20 years, and official rates of recidivism for sex offenders are actually low compared to other types of offenders, but the media tend to ignore these facts. Many people become oversaturated by the news, and continuous reporting can cause panic in viewers. The type of information that the media report increases people’s concern that they, or a close family member, might become a victim of a sex offense. With the fear increased—making the topic relevant in our culture—media outlets then spend more time reporting on such issues because people are interested and the stories will sell.

Keywords: media, news reporting, perception, sex crime, sex offender

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