The media’s fixation with shark attacks began on July 6, when 8-year-old Mississippi boy Jessie Arbogast was bitten by a bull shark while standing in shallow water at Santa Rosa Island’s Langdon Beach. The shark, which measured approximately 7 feet (2.1 m) in length, bit off Arbogast’s arm in the attack; it was then caught and killed after being dragged by its tail onto shore by Arbogast’s uncle, Vance Flosenzier. Although Arbogast was immediately pulled out the water by an unidentified bystander, the sever
Investigative journalist John Stossel explains the media’s shark fixation in his book Give Me a Break, stating:
Instead of putting risks in proportion, we [reporters] hype interesting ones. Tom Brokaw, Katie Couric, and countless others called 2001 the “summer of the shark.” […] In truth, there wasn’t a remarkable surge in shark attacks in 2001. There were about as many in 1995 and 2000, but 1995 was the year of the O.J. Simpson trial, and 2000 was an election year. The summer of 2001 was a little dull, so reporters focused on sharks.
Source: Summer of the Shark – WikipediaNo tags for this post.