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Running shoes, including one with an American flag, are tied to the gates of the American embassy in Ottawa after a march in solidarity with the Boston community in Ottawa, Canada. Justin Tang/The Canadian Press/Press Association Images

Boston bombing most closely followed news story since Wall Street collapse

Study of American media finds it fifth in the top stories for public since 9/11.

THE PEW RESEARCH Center for the People and the Press published the first analysis of media consumption during the Boston Bombing, and it shows that the week-long saga was the most closely followed news story Stateside in five years.

The survey also shows evidence of the pervasive power of digital media. Half of those surveyed kept up with news online or by mobile, and just over a quarter followed the story on a social networking site. In contrast, 29 per cent followed the story by newspaper.

The analysis found that 63 per cent of Americans were following the story “very closely,” making it the fifth-most closely followed story since 2001.

This puts the Boston Bombing story behind only the 9/11 attacks (78 per cent), Hurricane Katrina (73 per cent), the US economic crash in September 2001 (70 per cent) and the DC sniper (65 per cent).

The coverage of the bombing of the Boston Marathon was watched as closely as the coverage of the invasion of Iraq in March 2003.

Here’s the breakdown of the most closely followed stories since 2001:

Pew Center for the People and the Press

Read the full findings here>

- Walter Hickey

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