Look at this map by Twitter engineer Simon Rogers. In early September, mentions of Ebola came from where you’d expect: countries near the outbreak, with satellite interest in areas with West African diasporas, including the U.K. and the coastal United States. U.S. interest took off in mid-September, when two American missionaries and an aid group doctor were diagnosed and transferred to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta. Attention dwindled again until, boom, Oct. 1, when news hit saturation that Thomas Eric Duncan, a Liberian man in Dallas, had been diagnosed; America appears to be on fire. Looking only at that stage of the map, you’d think 3,431 people were dead across the United States and perhaps one or two in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone, not the other way around.
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