Diffusion of news of attacks on President Reagan and the Pope were studied in three samples of telephone and face-to-face interviews. The first sample of 277 interviews was completed within hours of the Reagan shooting and the second sample of 77 interviews within hours of the attack on the Pope. The third set of 96 interviews was conducted 15 weeks after the second sample. The first two interview sets were designed to measure the diffusion process and to study reactions to the shootings. The third group was studied to determine the effects of delayed measurement of the diffusion of political assassinations on the validity of conclusions drawn by delayed measurement diffusion studies. Results were compared with results from earlier studies of political assassinations.
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