Live Science has an interesting read on how the movie “Jaws,” the Jersey Shore attacks of 1916, and World War II accounts of shark attacks have altered the public perception of sharks over the past century. The article quotes George Burress as saying
“At the turn of the 20th century, there was this perception that sharks had never attacked a human being. There was even a reward offered if someone could prove they were bitten by a shark — money that was never collected.”
The article goes on to note that after “Jaws” was released shark-hunting tournaments began to gain popularity on the East Coast of the U.S. According to Burress, the shark-hunting trend “dramatically reduced nearly all shark species over the following decades.”
The article also goes on to mention an “inadvertent benefit” that came about as a result of declining shark populations. Scientist became more conscious of the need learn more about sharks which resulted in an increase in funding for shark research.
Visit Live Science to see the full article, How ‘Jaws’ Forever Changed Our View of Great White Sharks.