Thursday, December 9, 2010

sex offenders in the news

i'm making graphs now, that's how exciting it is.
[let me start by saying i have just discovered the google news archive search and it is cool!]

the earliest internet-chronicled (says google) mention of a sex offender in newsprint was in 1932 and from australia. the article tells of a man sentenced to death for capital sexual offense. the brief article also states it's the first execution for a similar crime in 41 years. ["CRIME AGAINST CHILD" in the Evening Post, Volume CXIV, Issue 66, 15 September 1932, Page 11.]

in fact, in the 1930s, there are 29 articles that use the term 'sex offender.'
in the 1940s, there were 182. in the 50, 512. in the 60s, 542. 70s, 1,350. in the 1980s, 5,160 and 24,000 in the 90s. from the years 2000 to 2010 - are you ready for this? 136,000. there were 15,500 in just this year alone.

obviously, this is a very preliminary idea, not without it's problems.* but to me this confirms some of my recent statements about the public's increasing attention to sexual offenders.

* one being the availability of old newspaper articles on the internet, another that it doesn't account for the content of the news reports, e.g., reporting on events, disseminating information, etc.

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