All posts tagged: shark

Shark Attack

About six years ago, I began having access to a beach house on the coast of North Carolina for one or two weeks a year. I’ve loved extreme sports for a much longer time than that, so I immediately began considering surfing as a new pastime. Unfortunately, around the same time that I started going to this beach house, I began paying more attention to the news related to the coast. This meant I started hearing news reports about sharks. And, for some reason, these reports gave me an irrational fear of shark attacks. So much so that one year I avoided the water almost altogether. The strange thing about my reaction is that I am aware of the mass communication theories that account for this effect. Exposure to repeated news cycles of shark attacks can impact your view of the likelihood of it happening to you or, at least, its prevalence in general. At university, I studied something similar—the impact of views on violent crime that makes people stay away from downtown and urban …