Journalisted weekly: Obama, bomb plots, and housing benefit

Journalisted is an independent, not-for-profit website built to make it easier for you, the public, to find out more about journalists and what they write about. It is run by the Media Standards Trust, a registered charity set up to foster high standards in news on behalf of the public, and funded by donations from charitable foundations.

Each week Journalisted produces a summary of the most covered news stories, most active journalists and those topics falling off the news agenda, using its database of UK journalists and news sources. From now on we’ll be cross-posting them on

For the week ending Sunday 31 October

  • President Obama appeared in more articles than all UK politicians, bar one
  • Housing benefit covered extensively, thanks in part to Boris Johnson’s ‘Kosovo’ comparison
  • Brazil’s presidential election, and a spat on the North-South Korean border, received little coverage

The Media Standards Trust’s latest report ‘Shrinking World: The decline of international reporting in the British press’ is now available to download

For the latest instalment of Tobias Grubbe, journalisted’s 18th century jobbing journalist, go to

Covered lots

  • President Obama, whose party is predicted to take heavy losses in the US midterm elections, 416 articles
  • Cuts to housing benefit, with fears of ‘social cleansing’ and suburban flight, 224 articles
  • Another plane bomb plot with suspected terrorist links to Yemen, 150 articles

Covered little

  • The Brazilian presidential election, with governing party candidate Dilma Rousseff elected as the country’s first female leader, 24 articles
  • North Korea and South Korea, with shots reportedly fired across the border, 10 articles
  • Google, the focus of a parliamentary debate on privacy and the internet last Thursday, 8 articles

Political ups and downs (top ten by number of articles)

Celebrity vs serious

  • Wayne Rooney holidaying in Dubai, having agreed to stay with Manchester United, 86 articles vs. WikiLeaks, having published almost 400,000 documents about US military actions in Iraq, 87 articles
  • Cheryl Cole, X Factor judge, 109 articles, vs. an earthquake triggering a tsunami off the coast of Sumatra, killing over 400 people, 57 articles
  • The ‘Emperor’ stag of Exmoor, rumoured shot dead by a foreign trophy hunter, 51 articles vs. the EU summit, with Chancellor Merkel striving for EU law reform to help with bail outs, also 51 articles

Who wrote a lot about…’Yemen’

Duncan Gardham – 7 articles (the Telegraph), Chris McGreal – 6 articles (the Guardian), Gordon Rayner – 5 articles (the Telegraph), Vikram Dodd – 5 articles (the Guardian), Dan Milmo– 4 articles (the Guardian)

Long form journalism

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