May 18, 2022

New Report From Media Cloud: “2020: A Year in News Coverage”

From a Media Cloud Blog Post:

  What did the year 2020 look like in US news coverage? We analyzed over 27 million stories from over 10,000 US-based news sources published during 2020 to answer this question. Per our typical Media Cloud research methodology, we pay special attention to the events driving coverage, the top words used in coverage, and the top people mentioned in the news.

Top Stories

As the top words used in coverage reveal, there were three major stories dominating news coverage in 2020: the coronavirus pandemic, the presidential campaigns and election, and issue of police brutality against people of color, as exemplified by the killings of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor and the ensuing protests. 

Top 100 most frequently used words in US news stories from 2020 (sample of 10,000 stories)

Top 100 most frequently used words in US news stories from 2020 (sample of 10,000 stories) Source: Media Cloud

Media Cloud is a consortium research project across multiple institutions, including the University of Massachusetts Amherst, Northeastern University, and the Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society at Harvard University.

Direct to Complete Post/Report

Direct to Media Cloud

About Gary Price

Gary Price ( is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.