ERIC Number: ED236692
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1982-May-21
The Influence of New Media and Citizen Groups on the Knowledge Gap in an Inner-City Neighborhood.
Focusing on knowledge of four public affairs issues important to residents of a Midwestern inner-city neighborhood, a study examined the relative contributions to knowledge made by two neighborhood newspapers and by organized community group activities. A sample of 239 residents was asked open-ended questions about housing, crime, economic development, and school issues. A purposive sample of 52 leaders of neighborhood organizations interested in those specific issues was also interviewed, and two neighborhood newspapers were content analyzed for several months prior to the interviewing. The major findings were that (1) high levels of organized group activity were related to larger knowledge gaps, which was contrary to expectations; (2) high levels of community neighborhood newspaper publicity about issues appeared to lead to reduced knowledge disparities; (3) contrary to previous findings, conflict appeared not to have contributed to reduced knowledge gaps; (4) distributing information more widely did not necessarily lead to equalization of knowledge; and (5) organized groups' information strategies may have contributed to higher knowledge levels among the least educated. (Extensive tables of data are appended.) (FL)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Conference of the American Association for Public Opinion Research (37th, Hunt Valley, MD, May 21, 1982).