ERIC Number: ED283728
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1982-Apr
Reference Count: 0
The Media Elite and American Values. Ethics and Public Policy Reprint No. 38.
Lichter, S. Robert; Rothman, Stanley
In this information-saturated society, only a tiny part of the daily barrage of facts and opinions that pour forth from a 100 sources can be received and absorbed. Consequently, individuals must depend on the major media of communication to sift the information and decide what is worthy of being called news. Two hundred-forty journalists and broadcasters, largely from the prestige media, including "The New York Times," the "Washington Post," the "Wall Street Journal,""Time,""Newsweek," and the television networks were interviewed. These media elite identify themselves as liberals, and from 1964 through 1976 they voted for the Democratic presidential candidate 80% of the time. On many social and political issues, their views differ notably from middle class American values and preferences; 89%, for example, support abortion on demand, and 58% believe that the United States exploits the Third World and causes poverty there. The study reveals that the media elite see the business elite as the most influential leadership group (other than politicians) in the United States and themselves as second. The journalists believe, however, that they themselves should be in the top position of influence. The consequences of this combination of influence, aspiration, and bias in the media elite are difficult to measure, but common sense buttressed by solid content studies suggests there is a link between journalists' policy preferences and their performance. (BZ)
Descriptors: Attitude Measures, Beliefs, Demography, Higher Education, Information Sources, Journalism, Mass Media, Media Research, News Media, Nonprint Media, Political Attitudes, Political Campaigns, Social Attitudes, Social Science Research, Value Judgment, Values
Ethics and Public Policy Center, 4720 Boston Way, Lanham, MD 20706 ($1.00).
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Ethics and Public Policy Center, Washington, DC.