NC State Study Finds Positive YouTubes Aid Shark Conservation

Videos of shark attacks are popular – some of Discovery’s “Shark Week” videos of sharks attacking cages or people have attracted millions of views online. But according to a new study from North Carolina State University, positive videos of sharks could help change people’s attitudes in the predators’ favor.

“We need to find ways to protect these important species – they help regulate oceanic food webs and influence prey dynamics,” said the study’s lead author Justin Beall, a graduate student at NC State. 

“There are other species in decline due to illegal hunting, such as tigers and elephants, but the difference is that many people around the world support protection of tigers and elephants,” said study co-author Lincoln Larson, associate professor of parks, recreation and tourism management at NC State.