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Chapter 10. Project Revere: Leaflets as a Medium of Last Resort. Background for Project Revere. When was study conducted? Where conducted? The key players... American public U.S. Air Force / CIA University researchers Gold Shield Coffee company Funding. Leaflets used during War Time.

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Chapter 10

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Chapter 10

Project Revere: Leaflets as a Medium of Last Resort


Background for Project Revere

  • When was study conducted?

  • Where conducted?

  • The key players...

    • American public

    • U.S. Air Force / CIA

    • University researchers

    • Gold Shield Coffee company

  • Funding


Leaflets used during War Time

  • Leaflets have a long history in politics and war.

  • WW I

    • 3 million leaflets distributed

  • WW II

    • 3 billion distributed

  • Used in every American war

    • Korean, Vietnam, Gulf, Afghanistan

    • Often used as “surrender passes”

    • Warn civilians of imminent bombing


Purpose

  • To gain knowledge about the leaflet as a medium of communication.

    • Even though had been used in the past, limitation and capacities were poorly understood. No research had been done on their effectiveness.


“Gold Shield Coffee Good as Gold”

  • Method

    • Pretests

    • Researchers visited a sample of households

    • Gave “starters” the advertising slogan

    • Leaflets dropped on town

    • Researchers returned three days later with coffee

  • Tracing the pathways


The Phone Game


Diminishing Returns & Message Distortion

  • Patterns of Distortion

    • Leveling

    • Sharpening

    • Assimilation

  • Results


Effects of Repetition

  • Cause and predicted effect

    • independent variable (cause): number of leaflets per person

    • dependent variable (effect): knowledge of message

  • Diminishing returns hypothesis

  • Civil Defense theme study

  • Content

  • Data Collection


Implications

  • Two-step flow: effects on accuracy

  • Importance of direct contact with medium

    • Scarcity vs. Abundancy

  • Oral vs. pass-on message diffusion

    • Children

    • Adults


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