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True crime is a media genre of growing popularity, and also of growing controversy. Recent media production has sparked debate over how the genre affects the public's perception on crime, as well as how it affects the victims family. I wanted to discover how true crime media can be a genre that helps the public more than it hurts, and offers information and education rather than romanticization of terrible people and events, and discover all the ways that it can cause harm, so we can learn how to stop and understand the parts that can be harmful. Research was conducted through internet and library sources to find primary and secondary sources. Lived experiences, social media posts, and studies of effects and media consumption were all examined. It was concluded that true crime media has the potential to be both helpful or extremely harmful, depending on the way that producers of the media choose to frame the killers and the crimes. If crime is not glamorized, and the victims stories are chosen to be displayed accurately over the priority of money and views, then the media genre has the potential to educate and examine mistakes and prejudice made by the justice system, especially towards people of color, and prevent them from happening in the future. It's important for viewers of true crime to consume this media responsibly, and it's even more important for producers of this media to stay accurate, respectful, and not glamorize the crimes that they portray. Unfortunately, there is little to be done about placing regulations on this kind of media, so it's crucial that true crime lovers boycott or avoid media that can be disrespectful, unproductive, or inaccurate. Producers of this kind of media should also be required to share a percentage of the media's income with victims' families.

Publication Date



Logan, UT


controversy, prejudice, public perception, true crime media


Social and Behavioral Sciences

The Effects of True Crime Media