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Hostile media effect. Defining hostile media effect. People’s tendency to perceive neutral news coverage as one-sided and unfair in favor of their opposing side (HME). . Defining Hostile Media Effect.

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defining hostile media effect
Defining hostile media effect
  • People’s tendency to perceive neutral news coverage as one-sided and unfair in favor of their opposing side (HME).
defining hostile media effect1
Defining Hostile Media Effect
  • When we talk about people then we usually refer to partisans that believe in a particular idea or cause
defining hostile media effect2
Defining Hostile Media Effect
  • Assimilation bias
  • the tendency to find information supportive rather than opposed to ones owns on position but also to dismiss unfavorable content as unreliable
defining hostile media effect3
Defining Hostile Media Effect
  • Third-Person-Effect (TPE)
    • A person exposed to a media message (possibly persuasive in nature) would see a greater effect on others than on himself or herself.
the people initiating the research
The people initiating the research
  • Vallone, Ross & Lepper - HME
  • Lord, Ross, and Lepper– Assimilation Bias
  • Davison – Third Person Effect
why is it important
Why is it important?
  • The perception of media bias affects two fundamental features that characterize the relationship between the public and the media: the public’s trust and the media’s influence.
why is it important1
Why is it important?
  • People who are susceptible to HME view media content as unfair and inaccurate. This undermines trust in the media.
  • which in turn could correlate with a decrease in the media’s influence.

The Hostile Media Phenomenon: Biased Perception and Perceptions of Media Bias in Coverage of the Beirut Massacre.Vallone, Ross & Lepper (1985)

  • Stimulus materials: videotaped segments devoted to the Beirut Massacre in 1982. (Palestinian and Lebanese vs. Israeli)
  • Procedure: participants completed a questionnaire designed to elicit their perceptions of the fairness and objectivity of the news programs.
  • Each side of the participants saw the news segments as biased in favor of the other side.

More specifically, pro-Israeli subjects saw the news programs as “applying higher standards to Israel” as compared to pro-Arab ones who believed that the media were “applying lower standards to Israel.”

  • Two underlying mechanism:
  • Differing evaluation: partisans see the claims associated with their viewpoints as more credible and accurate than the opposing viewpoints. The opposing view is seen as “inferior.”
  • Differing recollection: They perceived a different stimulus with different content and emphasis.
  • Partisans on both sides believed that this overall sample of news coverage would lead undecided or ambivalent viewers to become more hostile to the side that the partisans personally favored
  • Subjects with more knowledge/emotional involvement are more inclined to view the media as bias against them.

Christen, C., P. Kannaovakun, et al. (2002). "Hostile Media Perceptions: Partisan Assessments of Press and Public During the 1997 United Parcel Service Strike."

  • Persuasive press inference (remember TPE): people may infer public opinion from their perceptions of the slant of media coverage and their assumptions that such coverage has a substantial impact on others.
  • False consensus/Projection: others. The tendency of individuals to see their own opinions and behaviors as relatively common while viewing alternative opinions and behaviors as uncommon.
why does the hostile media effect exist
Why does the Hostile Media Effect exist?
  • Research has not found a definitive answer yet
  • One explanation is
    • perceived reach of information
    • Mainstream media vs. smaller outlets
media bias
Media bias
  • Is the tendency of journalists to select a certain type of events and stories to report on and then to cover/ frame them in a certain way.
  • Selectivity leads to
    • Inability to report “all the important and relevant facts of the story
    • Loss of media neutrality
  • Themes:
    • Support or attack of a certain political figure
    • Favoring advertisers
    • Favoring corporations (NBC and GE)
    • Sensationalism
    • Gender + sexual orientation
    • Religion
    • Age etc
  • Good question!
    • Sometimes the coverage and selection reflects journalists attitudes and believes
    • The newsroom setting or media outlet can set the tone (MSNBC & Fox News)
  • Horse race journalism
  • Talking heads
  • Experts over layman
  • Press conferences
  • Over extended coverage
other topics
Other topics
  • Covering natural disasters
  • Accidents, death
  • Animals
  • Babies
  • Sex