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Casey Anthony Trial Media Frenzy Explained

5:13 PM, Jul 7, 2011   |    comments
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Elon, NC -- There are hundreds of missing person cases across the US.  However, the case of Casey Anthony, and her daughter Kaylee, has captured the attention of the media and the public over the last several weeks.

On Thursday, WFMY News 2 asked a local expert why this case has garnered more attention than others.

According to Kenn Gaither, Associate Dean and Associate Professor at Elon University, as a culture, Americans are attracted to mystery and oddity.

"Unlike so many other cases, this one captures the public's imagination because you have beauty. You have sex. You have death. You have intrigue. That's the perfect combination," Gaither said.

Gaither added that television in and of itself is a visual medium. And the attractiveness of Casey Anthony and her young daughter immediately turn heads.

Gaither said race also plays a factor in the publicity of this case. He said there have been a number of studies done that look at race and media coverage.

"Statistically speaking, whites tend to get more attention than blacks," Gaither said.

According to Gaither, "if this story were different, if blacks were involved, it would probably be a different kind of story. I would argue it would get a significant amount of media attention, but not the same kind of attention this has received."

The zaniness and the spectacle of the characters also captured the media and public's attention.  But according to Gaither, what stunned people the most was the tragedy and the mystery of an unsolvable crime.

WFMY News 2

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