First it was the tragic loss of Malaysian flight 370 that spawned a marathon of media madness and speculation.
Now, the news is filled with another disaster: a South Korean ferry with 476 people on board sunk into the ocean last week.
Around the globe people are gripped by these stories of woe. Why?
Matt Lewis ponders the primal attraction of such disasters.
When large scale tragedies happen, how do we react? What does how we react say about us?
Using the Malaysia Flight 370 story he suggests it is natural that disasters would fascinate us. What is of concern is when they are presented like a box office hit rather than a sad reality.
With weeks of airtime to fill, the media has gone on flights of fancy...entertaining wild speculation to explain the mystery of its disappearance.
And people seem to be eating it up.
Unlike Malaysian airplane saga, the media covering the ferry disaster have living actors to blame.
The captain and crew have been accused of crimes "akin to murder" in the words of South Korean President Park Geun-hye. A serious charge.
The captain apologized to the whole nation for his actions. He will still face justice, and rightfully so. But are the captain and crew really "murderers," and how productive is it use this language when there was no malicious intent?
There are things to learn from such events: how to improve our transportation infrastructure, how to decrease the ability for human error.
However, we'd prefer our news reports to be without wild speculation and unfounded language...with the privacy of the victims' families being a central concern.
Unfortunately, it seems sober analysis is often a casualty of disaster coverage.