Mass shootings in the United States

Research/Study Research/Study

Cable news repeatedly aired names of Buffalo and Uvalde mass shooters

  • In the roughly three days immediately following two different recent mass shootings -- in Buffalo, New York, and Uvalde, Texas -- cable news repeatedly reported the names of the perpetrators, sometimes more than once per segment.

    Fox News aired the most mentions of the shooters' names, with network anchors, hosts, correspondents, and analysts mentioning the Uvalde shooter 76 times and the Buffalo shooter 32 times, for a total of 108 mentions. CNN figures uttered 47 such mentions: 33 for Uvalde and 14 for Buffalo. MSNBC personalities said the shooters’ names 24 times, with 19 for Uvalde and 5 for Buffalo.

  • Cable news mentions of Buffalo and Uvalde shooters' names
  • The No Notoriety campaign founded by Tom and Caren Teves, whose son was murdered in the 2012 Aurora, Colorado, theater mass shooting, recommends that journalists limit the naming of perpetrators, which the Teves say will reduce the motivation for notoriety that can inspire copycat acts of violence.

  • Methodology

  • Media Matters searched transcripts in the Kinetiq video database for all original programming on Fox News Channel for the term “Gendron” from 8 p.m. ET May 14, 2022, when cable news first mentioned the Buffalo shooter by name, through 8 p.m. ET May 17, 2022, and for the term “Ramos” from 5 p.m. ET May 24, 2022, when cable news first mentioned the Uvalde shooter by name, through 5 p.m. May 27, 2022.

    We reviewed all mentions for whether they clearly referenced Payton Gendron or Salvador Ramos. We included mentions only from anchors, hosts, correspondents, or analysts employed by the networks; we did not include mentions from guests. We also did not include mentions within played clips or during live coverage of press conferences. We counted each such instance of either term as a single mention.