ERIC Number: ED150601
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1977-Aug
Reference Count: 0
A Reconsideration of Bias in the News.
Stevenson, Robert L.; Greene, Mark T.
This paper discusses three conceptual problems--point of view, unit of bias, and behavioral response--with using content analysis to study news bias. The paper shows that the point of view of the content analyst is not appropriate if one wants to see how news consumers define and react to bias, that the unit of bias should be the specific instance of bias rather than a generalized summary evaluation, and that individual behavior is a more appropriate element of news bias to study than the content itself. In an exploratory study of news bias that tried to cope with those problems, 73 undergraduates were asked to read favorable and unfavorable magazine and newspaper stories about the 1976 presidential candidates, to indicate where and why they paused in their readings of the stories, and to report both their political attitudes and their evaluations of the content of the news stories. Results indicate that what news consumers see as news bias is often news that is discrepant with their existing ideas and unrelated to journalistic accuracy, completeness, or balance (Author/RL)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Association for Education in Journalism (60th, Madison, Wisconsin, August 21-24, 1977)