Compassion SEM 2 How Mass Media Communication about Natural Disasters Facilitates Helping Behavior: A Structural Equation Modeling Analysis Introduction December 26, 2004. The earthquake in the Indian Ocean triggers a series of tsunamis that devastate South and Southeast Asia. August 30, 2005. Hurricane Katrina strikes the U.S. Gulf Coast, obliterating hundreds of communities. October 22, 2007. Wildfires erupt in Southern California, forcing evacuations of half a million people and destroying over 1,600 homes. After these and numerous other disasters the mass media were blanketed with coverage from disaster areas. Images of destroyed houses and dead or grieving people filled the nightly news, and the donations poured in. However, the mechanism by which exposure to disaster images translates into financial donation to help the victims remains unclear. This paper develops a structural model of compassion, focusing... [continues]
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