ERIC Number: ED193730
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1980-May
Reference Count: 0
The Mass Media and Political Behavior: Television Viewing Habits and Vote Turnout.
Kellstedt, Lyman A.
Data from a 1976 election study were used to compare the effects of different types of television watching (daytime, evening entertainment, news, campaign programing, presidential debates) on voter turnout and to compare these effects with those of other media (radio, magazines, newspapers). After controlling for the effects of the traditional variables used to explain voter turnout (such as education, efficacy, and the salience of politics), it was found that television viewing habits had an independent effect on rates of turnout. The effects varied depending on the particular television viewing habit: campaign/debate watching had a very positive effect; the effects of news watching were minimally positive; and, as expected, the effects of entertainment watching were negative (increased entertainment viewing correlated with lower voter turnout). As the frequency of attention to newspapers, radio, and magazines went up, turnout rose, with the greatest increases occurring for newspaper reading. Those subjects who relied on newspapers as their source of news voted at greater rates than those who relied on television. (RL)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Media Effects
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the International Communication Association (30th, Acapulco, Mexico, May 18-23, 1980).