Sunday, August 17, 2014

Changes in NYT-speak

The New York Times released a tool for tracking words in the newspaper's historical issues. Google had done this for all books published after 1500, but NYT is a reputable source, and it's interesting to compare the results.

Civil Rights Movement in the 60s

The African-American minority remains discriminated and after the 1960, but the media changed their policies in telling stories about it:

Democracy on War

Mentions of "democracy" hike during international conflicts to mobilize the population:

Ideological enemies

You have an instant peak as the enemy appears, but gradually the topic comes out of fashion. Also, Communism lasted a little longer, though it's nothing compared to the mass media's reaction to 9/11. That's interesting because the Cuban Missile Crisis and other Cold War conflicts were far more dangerous than anything Bin Laden could do.

The Times started preferring different wording for Nazis before Hitler disclosed his plans in 1939:

National priorities

After being a marginal topic for almost a century, security took over 12.5% of the Times' publications (while security in fact increased over the same period). Values like freedom remained at stable 2.5% for over 150 years:

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