Have you ever stopped to wonder what would happen if you went missing? More specifically, how much press coverage would you be “worth?”
Well, the Columbia Journalism Review– a bi-annually published magazine created by the Columbia Graduate School of Journalism– recently set out to answer this question for people of all demographics.
Two weeks ago, a new digital tool was launched in which people can input their age, gender identity, geographic location, and ethnicity.
Then, users can see how many news stories they would receive in the event they went missing.
The idea of calculating your newsworthiness may sound morbid, but the tool is part of a larger effort to raise awareness about “missing white women syndrome.”
In other words, how news organizations are less likely to cover the cases of any missing person who does not fit that demographic.
This term has been around for two decades after Gwen Ifill, the late journalist and author, coined it back in 2004.
But, it is clear that news outlets across the country have made little progress since then in terms of inclusive coverage decisions.
This reality was only amplified after twenty-two-year-old Gabby Petito disappeared and was later found murdered.