Insights

Echoes of Columbine: Copycat School Shootings

The Columbine High School Massacre on April 20, 1999 was the first school shooting to truly capture the nation’s attention. Twenty years later, the effects still reverberate, serving as a tragic warning for some and inspiration for others.

Data Visualization of Columbine Copycat Shootings

Behind the Numbers

The selected events were collected from a variety of news sources, where the number of attacks was reported at either 17* or 21* and the number of intercepted plots inspired by the Columbine Massacre ranged from 36 to 53.

Here are some slang terms related to the Columbine Massacre that might be used:

  • Columbiner - Someone who has a profound interest in the April 20th Columbine Massacre. 
  • NBK - Eric and Dylan's nickname for the Massacre, taken from the movie "Natural Born Killers"
  • Reb - Eric's nickname
  • Rebdomine - Eric's AOL screen name
  • Doom - First-person shooting computer game that Eric played online
  • VoDkA - Dylan's nickname
  • Natural Selection - Another nickname for the Massacre, also printed on the shirt Eric wore during the shooting
  • Trenchcoat Mafia - a small group of Columbine's self-styled outcasts who wore heavy black trench coats
  • Lolumbine - Term used to mock the Massacre
  • Arlene - Eric's nickname for his pump shotgun
  • 420 or 4/20 - Date of the Massacre
  • Basement Tapes - Tapes recorded by Eric and Dylan prior to the shooting
  • Super Columbine Massacre RPG - A computer game made to replay the Massacre
  • TCC (True Crime Community) - An online community that focuses on mass murderers, serial killers, and similar criminals including Columbine's perpetrators, often on the micro-blogging site Tumblr
  • Pumped Up Kicks - A song in 2010 by Foster the People written from the perspective of a homicidal kid intended to bring awareness to mental illness and gun violence but often repurposed as an anthem for shooters (Nikolas Cruz listened to this multiple times before his attack)
  • FTP - An apparel brand F**k the Population that released a series of shirts in 2015 with images of the dead bodies of Eric and Dylan and other shirts related to the Massacre

Recommended Reading

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