The media attention on large lottery jackpots definitely influences people to spend their money on tickets. It's truly a shame! The media doesn't portray how ridiculously difficult it is to win and how many people truly waste money on it. It's one of the worst gambles you can make. Sure someone wins....but how many lose?
The coverage of these events is absolutely irresponsible. The media, whether it actually knows it or not, pushes people to gas stations, convenience stores and corner stores to purchase tickets and become part of the jackpot. Unfortunately, those with addiction issues and money woes can become influenced by the buzz and choose to buy tickets instead of food for that week.
The media doesn't necessarily influence people to buy lottery tickets, but their coverage of the lottery may reach people who may not have known the jackpot size otherwise. Once people find out the jackpot is huge, they buy tickets or buy more tickets than they may have otherwise. It's human nature.
Yes, they cover it a lot but that is part of the fun. If people can't afford tickets they shouldn't buy them, but we can't blame the media. That would be like saying they shouldn't cover football games because it encourages people to go out and buy expensive tickets or gear from their teams.
Besides that no matter how quiet the media was people know the lottery exists and will just google it, and then learn about it. And then tweet about it and tell their friends, so in the end it is going to be in the media and when it is big that news is going to be discussed by more people.
That the media will report on it is inevitable. How you respond to the media is your responsibility.