An OSINT Study of Media Coverage of WorldCom

Just three years into the new millennium, two of the greatest symbols of American capitalism had imploded in a display of corruption and misgovernance. The increasingly internationalized world economy meant the fall of Enron and WorldCom had serious ramifications for foreign investors and markets, and the effects of these events were felt across the globe. As the popular media covered the unfolding events, each did so with the distinct interests of their home countries in mind, providing insight into regional reflections on this global event. WorldCom, in particular, had become a symbol of the information age, expanding into foreign telecommunications markets and managing one of the Internet backbones. This paper exploits the World News Connection open source intelligence product to examine international coverage of WorldCom’s 2002 collapse, exploring in-depth how the world reacted to the largest bankruptcy in corporate history. What we see is not the story of a telecommunications giant fallen on hard times,but that of an international enterprise slipping below the water, sending shockwaves that were felt around the globe.

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