ERIC Number: ED166698
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1978-Nov
Reference Count: N/A
News Bias in the 1972 Campaign: A Cross-Media Comparison. Journalism Monographs No. 58.
Hofstetter, C. Richard
The television networks nightly news coverage of the 1972 Presidential campaign was examined between July 10 and November 6, 1972 to assess the nature and impact of political bias in news coverage. The campaign news coverage of two newspapers and one wire service was also compared with respect to the content and length of each medium's news about the candidates, parties, and political issues to discern differences in the ways that the three media handled their news reports of the campaign. The types of bias investigated were those involved in the news selection process: whether the news was selected because of the peculiar characteristics of the medium (structural bias); because of influence by particular situations, such as political issues (situational bias); or because of the political prejudices of news personnel (political or partisan bias). The analysis showed that structural bias was clearly evident in much of the coverage; newspapers provided greater depth and included greater complexity in their campaign stories, while television news was biased toward visually exciting campaign events easily covered by film crews. No clear evidence, however, was found to suggest that the news coverage by any medium was situationally or politically biased. (RL)
Descriptors: Bias, Commercial Television, Content Analysis, Journalism, Mass Media, Media Research, News Media, News Reporting, Newspapers, Political Influences
AEJ Publications Manager, School of Journalism and Mass Communications, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, Minnesota 55455 ($2.50)
Publication Type: Books; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Association for Education in Journalism.