Newspaper and Online News 2015 Abstracts

Open Competition
Framing Oil on the Media Agenda: A Model of Agenda Building • Mariam Alkazemi; Wayne Wanta, University of Florida •
A path analysis tested an agenda-building model in which three real-world indicators – price of crude oil, U.S. production and U.S. consumption of oil) would lead to discussions of oil in Congress and media coverage of oil. The model showed the level of U.S. oil production produced the strongest path coefficients. Congress and the media formed a reciprocal relationship. The model worked better when oil was framed as an economic issue than as an environmental issue.

Error message: Creation and validation of a revised codebook for analyses of newspaper corrections • Alyssa Appelman, Northern Kentucky University; Kirstie Hettinga, California Lutheran University • This project seeks to create and validate a corrections codebook that accounts for modern-day content and technology. In Study 1, we qualitatively analyze applications of previous corrections codebooks and identify areas for revision. In Study 2, we apply our revised codebook to a new set of corrections (N = 104) and analyze its effectiveness. Based on these analyses, this study recommends its new typology for future analytical studies of corrections.

Who’s Responsible for Our Children’s Education? Framing a Controversial Consolidation of School Systems • Morgan Arant, University of Memphis; Jin Yang, University of Memphis • This content analysis found that newspaper coverage of a controversial consolidation of Memphis City Schools into Shelby County Schools was dominated by official government sources while the voices of ordinary citizens, students and teachers were absent in the coverage. Pro-consolidation sources far exceeded anti-consolidation and neutral sources. In terms of news frames used, the responsibility frame was the most prevalent, followed by the conflict frame, the economic consequences frame and the human interest frame.

Personalization without fragmentation: The Role of Web Portal and Social News Recommendations on News Exposure • Michael Beam, Kent State University; R. Kelly Garrett, The Ohio State University • This study investigates the over-time impact of receiving personalized news recommendations through web portals and social media on online and offline selective exposure. Some scholars have worried that the increased control given to users of online algorithmic and social news recommendation technologies might lead to increased fragmentation of news exposure and political polarization, while others have argued that digital technologies provide people a path to accessible and personally relevant news, which fosters increased news consumption. Nationally representative survey panel data collected over three-waves during the 2012 US Presidential election show that using news recommenders from web portals and social media is related to greater news exposure across the board, including pro-attitudinal & counter-attitudinal partisan news sources, and non-partisan news. Using online news recommenders is positively related to offline news exposure. Furthermore, over-time analysis show that, while pro-attitudinal news exposure drives over-time engagement in news, people are not likely to turn away from news sources that challenge their perspectives. We discuss these findings and their implications for the ongoing debate about the democratic consequences of technological selective exposure.

Following the leader: An exploratory analysis of Twitter adoption and use among newspaper editors • Kris Boyle, Brigham Young University; Carol Zuegner, Creighton University • Some media critics say Twitter use by newsroom leaders sends a strong innovation message to the rest of the newsroom. This exploratory study examined Twitter use among 74 editors at top U.S. newspapers to evaluate their adoption and use of the social media tool. A content analysis of Twitter accounts revealed many of them were not frequent users. Those who do are primarily using it as a tool to promote content from their own publications.

Disrupted Lives, Disrupted Media: The Social Responsibility Role of Newsprint 10 Years after Hurricane Katrina • Jan Lauren Boyles, Iowa State University • This study profiles how The Times-Picayune has operated in the social responsibility tradition of newswork, after the destruction of Hurricane Katrina and the disruptions of the paper’s digital shift to less-than-daily print publication. Through in-depth interviewing, fieldwork, content analysis and network mapping, this multi-method approach illustrates the extent to which New Orleans residents depend upon the circulation of civic information necessary to navigate urban life.

The Third-Person Effect of News Story Comments • Gina Masullo Chen, The University of Texas at Austin School of Journalism; Yee Man (Margaret) Ng, The University of Texas at Austin School of Journalism • Results of an experiment (N = 301) showed that people thought civil disagreement comments posted on a news story about abortion were more persuasive than uncivil disagreement comments. In addition, results showed a third-person effect (TPE) of the comments, whereby people felt comments had greater persuasive power over others compared with themselves. Findings also supported the TPE social distance corollary such that subjects perceived comments as having the largest TPE perceptual gap between the self and those who disagreed with them. Results are discussed in relation to TPE and face and politeness theories.

Getting Their Stories Short: News Aggregation and the Evolution of Journalistic Narrative • Mark Coddington, Washington and Lee University • With its emphasis on stripping out key facts and quotes from stories, news aggregation might seem to represent a breakdown of the narrative conventions that have undergirded professional journalism. Using participant observation and interviews with aggregators, this study explores the use of narrative in aggregation, conceptualizing news narrative as a three-tiered phenomenon extending beyond individual texts. It finds that narrative is a crucial part of aggregation, shaping news’ trajectory more broadly than in traditional forms.

Who Makes (Front Page) News in Kenya? • Steve Collins • This content analysis of articles (n = 118) in Kenya’s three leading English language newspapers explored issues of balance and source diversity. Only slightly more than half of stories were balanced. About two-thirds of stories included a government source but those directly affected by government policies were seldom included. Front page articles were more balanced, more likely to include a government source and less likely to include an average citizen than were stories teased on the front page. Finally, stories from press conferences and other pre-planned events were ubiquitous. The results are considered in the context of Gatekeeping Theory.

How is online news curated? A cross-sectional content analysis • Xi Cui, Dixie State University; Yu Liu, Florida International University • This paper examines journalists’ curatorial practices on linked and embedded sources in various types of online news platforms. It aims to understand the curatorial practices in online journalism and explicate the continuity and changes in journalistic principles in the online environment. Differences in the prevalence of the curatorial treatments to linked sources as references, quotations or interpretations are found and can be attributed to the news platforms’ institutional history, journalistic orientations, and technological features.

Imaginary Travelers: What do travel journalists think their readers want? • Andrew Duffy, Wee Kim Wee School of Communication and Information • Travel journalists cannot know each traveler who they work for, so they must imagine what a reader wants. Starting from an agenda-setting perspective, this paper uses a modernist/post-modernist framework to identify how they imagine readers’ interests. It finds that the reader is more often imagined as modernist and adventurous than post-modernist and concerned with tourist sights. However, the latter were more common in Asia, which suggests that travel writers across the globe imagine readers differently.

Interactivity in Egyptian newspapers • Ahmed El Gody, Örebro University • The utilisation of information and communications technologies (ICTs) in Egypt has irrevocably changed the nature of the traditional Egyptian public sphere. One can see the Egyptian online society as a multiplicity of networks. These networks have developed, transformed and expanded over time, operating across all areas of life. Nonetheless, in essence they are sociopolitical and cultural in origin. This trend changed the way audiences consumed news, with traditional media –especially independent and opposition – started to utilise ICTs to access online information to develop their media content to escape government control. Several media organisations also started to expand their presence online so that, as well as providing news content, they also provided them with a space to interact amongst themselves and with media organisations. Audiences started to provide detailed descriptions of Egyptian street politics, posting multimedia material, generating public interest and reinforcing citizen power hence democratic capacity.

Strangers on a Theoretical Train: Inter-Media Agenda Setting, Community Structure, and Local News Coverage • Marcus Funk, Sam Houston State University; Maxwell McCombs, The University of Texas at Austin • Agenda setting and community structure theories are conceptual inverses of one another that are rarely considered in tandem. This study employs DICTION 6.0 and McCombs and Funk’s (2011, 2013) research design to compare news coverage of immigration and abortion over a 10-year period in national, high demographic interest, and low demographic interest newspapers. Although only modest support is found for inter-media agenda-setting, considerable support is found for community structure effects.

Tailoring the Arab Spring to American Values and Interests A Framing Analysis of U.S. Elite Newspapers’ Opinion Pieces • Jae Sik Ha, Univ Of Illinois-Springfield • This study investigated the portrayal of the Arab Spring by conducting a qualitative framing analysis of editorials and columns in two U.S. elite newspapers —The New York Times and The Washington Post. It found that the American papers filtered the unfolding events in the Middle East through a lens of national interest. Specifically, the democratic transformation of the Middle East was the most prominent ideological package in the American coverage. Overall, the American papers epitomized the viewpoints of American political elites, ex-officials, newspaper columnists and scholars. By contrast, they marginalized the viewpoints of guest columnists –such as activists and Arab scholars– who may be prone to highlight the faults and wrongdoings of successive U.S. administrations. Overall, the Arab Spring coverage in the American press strongly coincided with the worldviews of U.S. elites and government officials, with little mention of their country’s immense economic interests in the region.

Hubs for innovation: Examining the effects of consolidated news design on quality • Matthew Haught, University of Memphis; David Morris II, University of Memphis • In an effort to cut costs, newspaper chains nationwide have consolidated design operations at a few sites. These design hubs have changed the newspaper production process and removed designers from newsrooms; yet, top designers are able to work with their peers in a major city to produce all titles for a chain. This study uses a quantitative analysis of front pages collected from 435 newspapers throughout the United States to examine the quality of newspaper designs at hub and non-hub designed newspapers. It concludes that hub designed newspapers are generally better designed than non-hub newspapers.

Picturing the Scientists: A Content Analysis of the Photographs of Scientists in The Science Times • Hwalbin Kim, University of South Carolina; Sei-Hill Kim; Christopher Frear, University of South Carolina; Sang-Hwa Oh, Appalachian State University • Analyzing photographs of scientists in The Science Times, this study examines how scientists have been portrayed visually in the newspaper. The results showed that the actual gender distribution among U.S. scientists was quite accurately represented in the newspaper. However, a race gap still existed at least in newspaper photographs, with non-white scientists being significantly underrepresented. The analysis of visual framing indicated that The Science Times portrayed scientists as expert professionals.

Exploring the influence of normative social cues in online communication: From the news consumers’ perspective • Jiyoun Kim • This quantitative study investigates how the presented normative social cues influence people’s cognitive processing. Findings of this research indicate a positive effect of normative social cues on news processing in the online space. The online content with a high numbers of likes and shares (i.e., normative social cues) show significant direct and interactive effects on respondents’ news consumption intention, presumed different levels of others’ engagement with news content, and perceived importance of the news story.

Social Media as a Catalyst for News Seeking: Implications for Online Political Expression and Political Participation • Yonghwan Kim, University of Alabama; Joon Yea Lee, University of Alabama; Bumsoo Kim, University of Alabama • Employing 2-wave national panel survey data, this article investigates whether and how individuals’ general social media use is associated with their further news/information seeking behaviors. It further examines how such information seeking behaviors influence citizens’ online political expression and political participation. The results show that the more individuals use social media, the more they tend to seek news and information through social media platforms. The findings also demonstrate that such further information seeking behaviors have a significant implication for political expression and political participation. In other words, general social media use positively influences news/information seeking behaviors via social media, which, in turn, influences online political expression, which consequently increases individuals’ participation in politics.

Conceptualizing the Impact of Investigative Journalism: How a Prominent Journalistic Nonprofit Talks About Its Work • Magda Konieczna, Ursinus College; Elia Powers, Towson University • Journalists are typically wary of discussing the impact of their work, often articulating perspectives that suggest their responsibility for what they do ends at getting the story right. Not only can this be disingenuous, some commentators argue that it could be costing journalists an opportunity to regain respect from the public and to be more deeply involved in democracy. This article focuses on a project by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, a collaborative, journalistic nonprofit. We conduct a discourse analysis of the organization’s own language around one particularly high-profile project and discover that these journalists embrace discussing the impact of their own work, while stopping short of articulating particular goals. We posit that this could be a result of the consortium’s nonprofit funding, as well as its desire to push journalism to perform better. Given that news organizations in 120 countries made use of the reporting in this project, we argue that mainstream journalists are already engaging with impact-oriented work. We suggest that investigative journalists be more forthcoming about their impact orientation.

The Role of Twitter in Speed-driven Journalism: From Journalists’ Perspective • Angela Lee, University of Texas at Dallas • This study examines the effectiveness of Twitter as a social media tool connecting news workers and users. Through interviews with 11 journalists, this study revealed different ways in which Twitter is useful in journalists’ pursuit for speed. However, most interviewees used Twitter to interact with other journalists while paying little attention to audiences. They also believed Twitter promotes news use but does not contribute to news organizations’ bottom line. Theoretical and practical implications are discussed.

To the backburner during crisis reporting: Citizen journalists and their role during the Boston Marathon bombings • Josh Grimm; Jaime Loke, University of Oklahoma • This study examined the role of user-generated content during the coverage of the Boston marathon bombings. In-depth interviews were conducted with the interactive team at the Boston Globe who were in charge of the live blog during the week-long coverage. The study identified the perceptions journalists held of user-generated content during crisis reporting. The findings suggest that user-generated content is still perceived as fluff within the confines of a traditional newsroom.

Death Threats, Workplace Stress and the American Newspaper Journalist • Jenn B. Mackay, Virginia Tech • Workplace stress and journalistic death threats were studied using the Effort-Reward Imbalance Model. The model suggests that an imbalance of the efforts used on the job in comparison to the rewards is associated with poor health. A survey was administered to a random sample of American newspaper journalists (n=185). Women had higher effort-reward imbalances and overcommittment scores than men. Participants who had received a death threat (20.9%) described how the threat affected coverage.

The Affective Gap: Response to news of humanitarian crisis differs by gender and age • Scott Maier, University of Oregon; Marcus Mayorga, Decision Research; Paul Slovic, Decision Research • Using an online survey with embedded experimental conditions, the study examines gender and generational differences in reader reaction to news reports of mass violence in Africa. Affective response from women was found stronger than for men on 9 of 10 measures of emotion. Women also more strongly supported government intervention and charitable relief. Depending on story framing, older readers tended to express greater affective response than Millennials, and more strongly supported intervention and aid.

Likeable News: Three Experimental Tests of What Audiences Enjoy About Conversational Journalism • Doreen Marchionni, The Seattle Times • This exploratory study tested a new theoretical measurement model for online conversational journalism in terms of newspaper story likeability in a trio of controlled experiments. The conversation feature perceived similarity to a journalist, or coorientation, proved to be a powerful predictor of likeability across the studies. But a reader’s sheer interest in the story topic, along with a sense that the journalist is a real person who is open to citizen interaction, also was key.

Small Town, Big Message Strategy: Media Hybridity at the Hyper-local Level • Laura Meadows, Indiana University Bloomington • This ethnographic study transports Chadwick’s (2013) analytical approach of the hybrid media system into the study of social movements, viewing the movement activities of North Carolina’s LGBT activists through the lens of a system of interactions between older and newer media in order to reveal the complex media strategies deployed by contemporary movement actors at the hyper-local level.

Employing Transparency in Live-blogs • Mirjana Pantic, University of Tennessee; Erin Whiteside; Ivana Cvetkovic • As news outlets strive to adapt to the changing economic landscape, many have engaged in an ongoing process of innovative news reporting and delivery strategies. Among these evolving practices is the live-blog – an ongoing stream of updated information that is a pointed shift from the inverted pyramid format. As a fairly recent journalistic innovation, live-blogs not only provide a logical format for presenting breaking news, but also facilitate a sense of transparency among readers. Transparency may be especially important for the health of news organizations, as it enhances the news outlet’s credibility and trust among readers by drawing back the proverbial curtain that has traditionally masked the production of news (Karlsson, 2010). This research uses a content analysis to measure the quality of live-blogs incorporated by The (UK) Guardian, with a focus on examining how live-blog creators utilize various news elements that are available online. The researchers contextualize the findings within the broader concept of transparency, with a focus on the format’s utility for producing quality journalism.

Examining Interactivity Between Florida Political Reporters and the Public on Twitter • John Parmelee, University of North Florida; David Deeley, University of North Florida • A content analysis of Florida political reporters’ tweets examines the degree to which local and regional journalists interact with the public on Twitter. Interactivity was measured using a four-level model of cyber-interactivity (McMillan, 2002) that was adapted for this study. Findings indicate little of the most genuine form of interactivity between journalists and citizens but more of another type of engagement with fellow journalists.

Using time series to measure intermedia agenda setting in China • Kun Peng • This study sought to explore the intermedia agenda setting relationship between traditional newspapers and microblogs in China. Specifically, it aimed to examine a) whether intermedia agenda setting takes place between newspapers and Microblogs; b) who has the initiatives of the two media, the nature of the relationships; c) the time span needed to generate linkages between two media agendas. Four Chinese newspapers and two microblogs were content analyzed to test for the intermedia agenda-setting relationships. The MH370 event, a time-sensitive and event- driven news event, was used as a case study. This study worked within the traditional methodology of time series to conduct intermedia agenda-setting analysis. As a result, no significant correlation was found between the newspapers’ and microblogs’ agendas, however the intermedia agenda-setting effects vary depending on the type of the news stories. Overall, newspapers need more time to granger causes microblogs’ agendas.

Radically objective: The role of the alternative media in covering Ferguson, Missouri • Mark Poepsel, Southern Illinois University in Edwardsville; Chad Painter, Eastern New Mexico University • This paper, based on in depth interviews with journalists at alternative and advocacy papers in St. Louis as well as interviews with live streaming protestors, a new breed of citizen journalist, applies six characteristics commonly associated with the alternative press to coverage of the protests and police crackdown in Ferguson, Missouri between August 9, 2014 and March of 2015. Journalists from the alternative newspaper in St. Louis focused on progressive or radical values less than the literature predicted, but by treating radical actions objectively they still presented readers with viewpoints that differed from the onslaught of mainstream media coverage. The African American newspaper in St. Louis found itself influencing the national and global agenda regarding Ferguson and the ongoing oppression of blacks in the city and surrounding municipalities while at the same time helping to hold St. Louis together behind the scenes against the most radical elements. Mobile media savvy protestors broadcast police actions from the front lines of dissent in nearly constant live streams day after day from August to November, altering the scope of counternarrative and providing distilled, detailed dissent. In this study, researchers take on a major news event that in some ways is not yet finished and provide a snapshot of the alternative/advocacy press as it rose to fill in gaps in coverage and to find untold stories in one of the most widely broadcast events of 2014.

Social responsibility a casualty of 21st century newspaper newsroom demands • Scott Reinardy, University of Kansas • For newspaper journalists, social responsibility is protected by the First Amendment, outlined in newsroom mission statements, and enforced by a culture entrusted to produce truthful, comprehensive and fair information. The purpose of this study was to examine the social responsibility mission of newspaper journalists following extensive newsroom downsizing, and the incorporation of new and different work demands. Results from a survey of more than 1,600 news workers and depth interviews with 86 indicate that while newspaper journalists continue to embrace the notions of social responsibility, fulfilling the mission has become far more complex amid internal (burnout, job satisfaction) and external (workload, resources) pressures. Additionally, journalists indicate that despite their efforts, the quality of work suffers, particularly among journalists experiencing burnout.

The Buzz on BuzzFeed: Can readers learn the news from lists? • Tara Burton, University of Alabama; Chris Roberts, University of Alabama • Among the Internet’s new forms of news delivery is BuzzFeed.com, which mixes information with humor using text blocks and unrelated images. This storytelling technique raises questions about information retention and credibility compared to traditional news messages and messengers. An experimental study on college-age students, using Elaboration Likelihood Model and credibility theories, compared a BuzzFeed story treatment to a USA Today treatment. Most participants preferred BuzzFeed but retained less information than traditional treatment. Implications are discussed.

Assessing the Health of Local Journalism Ecosystems: Testing new metrics on three New Jersey communities • Sarah Stonbely, New York University; Philip M. Napoli, Rutgers University; Katie McCollough; Bryce Renninger • This research develops a set of scalable, reliable metrics for assessing the health of local journalism ecosystems. We first distinguish different levels of ecosystem analysis, allowing precision regarding the area of analytical focus. We then identify three layers of the journalism ecosystem by which its health may be assessed: infrastructure, output, and performance. We find marked differences in the journalism ecosystems studied here, suggesting further evidence for the digital divide and pathways for future research.

The Effects of Homepage Design on News Browsing and Knowledge Acquisition • Natalie Stroud; Alexander Curry; Cynthia Peacock; Arielle Cardona • Previous research shows that information seeking and knowledge acquisition differ depending on whether people use print or online news. Instead of contrasting online versus print news, we compare two different news homepage designs: a streamlined homepage design that resembles a tablet layout and a traditional homepage design that replicates a common layout for newspaper homepages. Scholarship on clutter and cognitive load suggested that the streamlined site would yield more page views and information recall compared to the traditional site. An experiment (n=874), fielded in February of 2015 using an online panel, found that the streamlined site did result in more page views and greater recall of the details from the articles compared to the traditional site. The results did not vary depending on the respondents’ education or history of using different news formats.

A Little Birdie Told Me: Factors that influence the diffusion of Twitter in newsrooms. • Alecia Swasy, University of Illinois • Twitter has become a global, social media platform that is reshaping the way journalists communicate, gather information and disseminate news. This study builds on the relatively young field of research by using diffusion of innovation theory to gauge what factors influence the spread and adoption of Twitter. Case- study and in-depth interview methods were used in collecting data from 50 journalists at four metropolitan newspapers. Results show that the adoption and implementation of Twitter relies on peer pressure and coaching to get reluctant journalists to try Twitter. Adoption is then immediate because journalists see how Twitter is a gateway to new sources of information and story tips. Ultimately, journalists embrace Twitter because it provides instant gratification because it allows them to build a following and share their stories with a broader, global audience.

Variation in the Media Agenda: How newspapers in different states covered the ‘Obamacare’ ruling • Brandon Szuminsky, Waynesburg University; Chad Sherman, Waynesburg University • This 485-newspaper study investigated the substantive differences in the media agenda of the 2012 Supreme Court ruling on the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare), as represented by newspaper front page coverage, with emphasis on differences in coverage between red and blue states. This news event provided a rare opportunity to examine how newspapers from all over the country — representing readerships located in all parts of the red-blue spectrum — would present the media agenda on the topic. Attention was paid to framing decisions expressed through headline word choice and space allocation as examples of how the media agenda was portrayed in areas with differing political tendencies. While many agenda-setting studies treat the media agenda as a monolithic entity, the present study found that there were significant variation in the portrayal of a news event within the media agenda. The data showed statistically significant relationships between the political tendencies of a newspaper’s state and county and its framing of the news event. This suggests that agenda-setting studies that treat the media agenda as a singular entity may be missing important nuance in the amount of variance within the media agenda in various parts of the country.

Credibility of Black and White Journalists and their News Reports on a Race-Coded Issue • Alexis Tan, Washington State University; Francis Dalisay, University of Hawaii at Manoa; Zhang Yunying, Austin Peay University; Lincoln James, Washington State University; Han Eun-Jeong, John Carroll University; Marie Louis Radanielina-Hita, McGill University; Mariyah Merchant • Two experiments examined the effects of a newspaper reporter’s name on his perceived race and credibility. Results show that White readers of a newspaper article are able to identify a reporter’s race based on his name alone. A reporter perceived to be Black and his news story on racial profiling were rated as more biased than a reporter perceived to be White and his news story. The White reporter also was rated as more rational and friendly than the Black reporter. Theoretical and practical implications are discussed.

What’s the big deal with big data? Norms, values, and routines in big data journalism • Edson Tandoc, Nanyang Technological University; Soo-Kwang Oh, William Paterson University • Through a content analysis of data journalism stories from The Guardian (n=260), a pioneer in contemporary big data journalism, we sought to investigate how the practice of big data journalism compare with traditional news values, norms and routines. Findings suggest that big data journalism shows new trends in terms of how sources are used, but still generally adhere to traditional news values and formats such as objectivity and use of visuals.

Objective, opaque, and credible: The impact of objectivity and transparency on news credibility • Edson Tandoc, Nanyang Technological University; Ryan Thomas, University of Missouri-Columbia • This study compared the effects of objectivity, a dominant standard in journalism, and transparency, argued to be replacing objectivity, on perceived news credibility and newsworthiness. An online experiment (n=222) found that objective articles were rated more credible and more newsworthy than opinionated articles. Non-transparent stories were rated more credible than transparent stories. Objective articles were more credible when they appeared on blog sites while opinionated articles were more credible when they appeared on news sites.

Channel Characteristics and Issue Types in the Agenda-Building Process of Election Campaigns • Ramona Vonbun, University of Vienna; Joerg Matthes, U of Vienna • This study investigates the agenda-building process between newswire, television news, newspapers, online news-sites, and political parties during the 2013 Austrian national election campaign. A special focus is on the stability of the agendas, the role of online news-sites as media and policy agenda-setters, the channel characteristics, and types of issues. The findings indicate an important agenda-setting role of newswire and online news-sites challenging the role of newspapers as agenda-setters.

Gatekeeping and unpublishing: Making publishing and unpublishing decisions • Nina Pantic, University of Missouri; Tim Vos, University of Missouri • This paper uses in-depth interviews to study decision-making within newspaper newsrooms regarding the handling of unpublishing requests as well as the influences on editors’ decision-making. The research addresses how editors deal with unpublishing and what factors, including the threat of legal action, influence decisions to publish or unpublish. The paper builds on gatekeeping theory, which catalogues multiple ways that editorial decisions are influenced by external factors.

Writing Ideology: Journalists’ Letters to Editors • Wendy Weinhold, Coastal Carolina University • The word journalist, and the domain of producers and texts that inhabit its boundaries, often lacks a clear and agreed definition. This analysis builds on and extends the depth of definitions afforded the American print journalist offered in literature that dominates journalism studies. This analysis utilizes critical textual analysis to study journalists’ letters to editors of journalism trade magazines published between 1998 and 2008. Deuze’s (2005, 2007) theory of the ideological definitions of journalists provides a framework for the qualitative analysis that identifies the patterned ways journalists define journalists when they write to journalism trade magazines, which perform a special role as watchdogs of the press. Drawing from the corpus of 2,050 letters published in American Journalism Review, Columbia Journalism Review, and Editor and Publisher, critical textual analysis identifies how discourses in the letters reflect or reshape traditional print journalists’ self definitions. The result is a catalog of information that shapes an understanding of the letters within the individual ideological framework of the community of people who volunteer their opinions for publication in these journals.

The Influence of Twitter Sources on Credibility in Online News • Taisik Hwang, University of Georgia; Camila Espina, University of Georgia; Bartosz Wojdynski, University of Georgia • This experimental study explores to what extent the use of Twitter as a news source affects the way audiences perceive the credibility of online news information regarding mass emergency events. A 3 (source format: interviewed sources, paraphrased tweets, embedded tweets) × 2 (source type: official, nonofficial) × 2 (number of retweets: few, many) between-subjects design is designed with 244 participants to implement the test. The results include that source type and system-generated cues do not have significant effect on perceived credibility of a news story about a natural disaster. The interaction between source type and number of retweets, however, occurs at the message level. The practical implications of these findings for journalists are discussed.

Framing E-Cigarettes: News Media Coverage of the Popularity and Regulation of Vaping • Lu Wu, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill; Rhonda Gibson, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill • This study used content analysis to explore how mainstream media frame e-cigarettes, a popular smoking device that has caused concern among public health advocates and raised questions for policy makers. The result showed that leading daily newspapers identified the most problematic issue with of e-cigarettes was underage smoking and their content is largely supportive of tobacco control policy initiatives on e-cigarettes.

Incivility, Source and Credibility: An Experimental Test of How University Students Process a News Story • Yanfang Wu; Esther Thorson, Missouri School of Journalism • Civility crisis has been a big concern of the Americans and transmitted worldwide since the 1990s. Uncivil attacks in political communication turned into a big threat to political trust. Administering a 3×2 mixed subjects experiment, the study seeks to find out whether source and uncivil commentary in a news story can predict the level of credibility of a news story. An online survey with a 3 (Source: newspaper, blog, student’s class writing) x 2 (Incivility: civil and uncivil) mixed subjects design experiment embedded in was conducted in a large Midwestern University. 447 undergraduate students took part in the experiment. Factor analysis shows that news credibility can be divided into two dimensions–message credibility and news organization credibility. The study found that the gauging of news credibility, both message credibility and news organization credibility, is influenced by both source and the perceived incivility of the story. Party ID is not a significant predictor of neither message credibility nor news organization credibility of a news story. A TPE was found on perceived incivility and news organization credibility but not message credibility.

Newspaper Editors’ Perceptions of Social Media as News Sources • Masahiro Yamamoto, University of Wisconsin-La crosse; Seungahn Nah; Deborah Chung, University of Kentucky • Social media platforms where billions of interlinked users post and share events and commentaries to the larger public can be a useful newsgathering tool for journalists. Based on data from a nationwide probability sample of newspaper editors in the United States, this study investigates the extent to which newspaper editors consider social media as an influential news source. Results indicate that variations in editors’ perceptions of social media as a news source were associated with multiple levels of influence including professional experience as a journalist, organization size, community structural pluralism, and citizen journalism credibility. Implications are discussed for the role of social media in news production.

On Click-Driven Homepages: An analysis of the effect of popularity on the prominence of news • Rodrigo Zamith, University of Massachusetts Amherst • The homepages of 14 news organizations were analyzed every 15 minutes over 61 days to assess the relationship between an item’s popularity and its prominence. The results indicated a large divergence between popular and prominent items, and limited effects of popularity on subsequent prominence. The findings give pause to fears of a shift toward a turn toward an agenda of the audience and underscore the importance of journalism’s occupational ideology and logic.

Student Papers
Inter-Media Agenda Setting Between Government and News Media: Directions and Issues MacDougall Student Paper Award • Abdullah Alriyami, Michigan State University •
Intermedia agenda setting is the main focus of this study. This empirical study aimed at identifying the relationship between news media and institutional media through the method of content analysis. To determine how influential the US government’s foreign policy decisions on the reporting of traditional news media, fifty two variables were coded on over 600 items obtained from the White House press briefings, Wall Street Journal, New York Times and USA Today during the first seven months of 2011. Cross lag correlation was used to correlate both types of media over two time periods. Results indicate an influence of institutional media over news media bringing an attention to the need to have specific language by the institutions to maintain and enhance such influence. Theoretically, the study adds to the existing literature on intermedia agenda setting research while at the same time applying Rozelle-Campbell Baseline to establish direction of correlation.

Effect of Negative Online Reader Comments on News Perception: Role of Comment Type, Involvement and Comment Number • Manu Bhandari, University of Missouri; David Wolfgang, University of Missouri • Scholarly research on online reader comments (ORCs), a form of user-generated content on online news sites, is growing but still remains rudimentary. To contribute to this pool of literature, a two-part study was done using the Elaboration Likelihood Model as the main theoretical framework. Study 1 experimentally investigated subjects’ perception of online news in the presence of negative ORCs of different types –– testimonial or informational –– and the moderating effect of involvement with the issue or topic of the news story. Since the first study used three ORCs for each ORC type, to disentangle the role of ORC number from that of ORC type, Study 2 examined the possible moderating influence of ORC number on the effect of testimonial vs. informational ORC type. Although results showed some variation, they generally indicated that informational ORC could be more persuasive than testimonial ORC in an online textual health news context, involvement at high levels could moderate the effects of ORC type, higher ORC number has stronger effects than lower numbers of ORC, and the advantage of negative informational ORC in impacting news credibility appears to be more at low (single) rather than high (three) ORC numbers.

The New Norm: Publicness and Self-Disclosure Among U.S. Journalists on Social Media • Justin Blankenship, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill • Traditionally, journalists demonstrate their credibility and objectivity by creating a distance between their personal opinions and their professional work. This article examined the potential conflict between the traditional distance norms of journalism and the more author-centric nature of social media communication through a survey (N= 201) of local journalists. Results indicate that age and how integrated social media is in one’s daily life lead to more favorable opinions of sharing personal information and reported sharing behavior.

An issue divided: How business and national news differ in Affordable Care Act coverage • Lauren Furey, University of Florida; Andrea Hall, University of Florida • This study seeks to understand how business news covers the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act in comparison to national newspapers. Using second-level agenda setting and framing as a theoretical base, content analysis results revealed that business news coverage was highly critical of the ACA, as these publications often highlighted issues and frames related to the financial consequences of the law, while depicting ACA-opposing sources and a negative tone in a majority of their coverage.

The Adoption of Technology and Innovation Among Colombian Online News Entrepreneurs • Victor Garcia, University of Texas at Austin • Media researchers have been interested in investigating how digital technology has shaped journalistic practices and content in online newsrooms. The purpose of this study is to contribute to that discussion by analyzing how native online newsrooms in Colombia are implementing technologies and innovation in their workspaces. This article uses the constructivist approach of the Actor Network Theory and Journalism Practices to investigate four relevant cases of study. In-depth interviews were used as a method. Results show online news entrepreneurs are flexible and creative in the adoption of technologies. They value the quality of content and their journalistic standards more than tools. The integration of users into their editorial process is still limited. The implications of these findings are discussed.

Determinants of issue salience • Catherine Huh, UC Davis • The current study attempted to explore the agenda-setting effects using data mining of publicly available search query data and its determinants. Consistent with the previous studies, transfer of salience between the media and search agendas was confirmed for the prominence of a foreign country in the news. Economic factors were the key determinants of both news coverage and online issue salience.

Taking it from the team: Assessments of bias and credibility in team-operated sports media • Michael Mirer, University of Wisconsin; Megan Duncan, University of Wisconsin-Madison • Team- and league-operated media play a growing role in the sports media system. Few have looked at how audiences perceive the credibility of in-house content, which often mimics traditional sports journalism. Using experimental methods this paper finds that even among fans, independent media content still is rated more credible than that produced in-house. Fans view stories accusing their team of wrongdoing as biased even as they find them credible.

Is the Internet portal an alternative news channel or another gatekeeper? • KYUNG-GOOK PARK, University of Pittsburgh; Eunju Kang, University of Florida • This study explored visual framing effects of online newspapers on readers and how candidates in the 2012 Korean presidential election were covered by the Internet portal as a news aggregator and provider. Three major portal websites (Naver, Daum, and Nate) were utilized as they are currently the primary online news channels. Furthermore, each online newspaper was categorized as conservative, neutral, or liberal/progressive. The data sample (N = 1024) focused on the visual coverage of Park Geun-hye, the candidate for the conservative ruling Saenuri Party, and the opposition Moon Jae-in, the candidate for the liberal Democratic United Party. The findings demonstrated that the news media aimed to generate a balance in their visual coverage of the presidential candidates in the 2012 campaign, whereas some bias also existed among each portal and online newspaper. More specifically, Naver as well as conservative and liberal/progressive online newspapers was not trying to balance the visual images used. These findings provide evidence that the Internet portal and online newspapers might in fact play a significant role in media agenda setting and visual framing.

Real Significance of Breaking News: Examining the Perception of Online Breaking News • Joseph Yoo, The University of Texas at Austin • With a plethora of online breaking news, there is a concern that the increase in the amount of breaking news could impoverish the quality of journalism. This study ascertained the perception of online breaking news by conducting a 2 (news with/without breaking label) x 2 (high and low news value) experiment. Neither breaking labels nor newsworthiness altered the credibility rating scales. Journalists should keep in mind that calling something breaking news neither helps nor hurts.

2015 Abstracts

Minorities and Communication 2015 Abstracts

Faculty Research Competition
Predictors Of Faculty Diversification In Journalism And Mass Communication Education • Lee Becker, University of Georgia; Tudor Vlad, University of Georgia; Oana Stefanita, University of Georgia, Grady College •
Based on data gathered between 1999 and 2013, this paper provides up-to-date information on faculty diversity in journalism and mass communication education. It examines the predictive power of four key institutional characteristics in producing diversification: accreditation status, type of control of the institution, type of mission, and region of the country. It shows diversification is increasing, but progress, particularly in terms of racial and ethnic diversity, is slow.

Stereotype, tradition, and Carmen Luna: The Puerto Rican woman in Lifetime TV’s Devious Maids • Melissa Camacho, San Francisco State University • This paper argues that Puerto Rican women are portrayed on US mainstream television according to traditional Hollywood stereotypes that group Latinas into a homogeneous category that reinforces the hegemonic values of a collective non-Latino/a community. These portrayals fail to accurately to represent Puerto Rican’s unique hybrid culture, which pulls together a national heritage and American cultural values resulting from the island’s colonial status. Yet, these representations also reflect values established by traditionally patriarchal island culture. The result is a distorted image of Puerto Rican political and cultural citizenship within the United States. Guided by social criticism, this qualitative deconstruction of the two first seasons of the Lifetime TV series, Devious Maids, demonstrates how the Puerto Rican character Carmen Luna negotiates this complicated position.

Complicating Colorism: Race, Gender and Space in Dark Girls • Nicola Corbin • This study examines the discursive production of colorism in the documentary Dark Girls, using articulation as a theoretical and methodological foundation. Locating colorism within the historically raced and gendered discourses of respectability politics, it concludes that colorism reveals a complex articulation of race with gender and the patriarchal politics of space. It is precisely because of this deep complexity that critical challenges to colorism have been inhibited, and its perpetuation persists.

Cross Cultural Political Persuasion: Assessing The Moderating Role Of Candidate Ethnicity And Strength of Ethnic Identification On Candidate Evaluation • Mian Asim, Zayed university; Troy Elias, University of Oregon; Alyssa Jaisle, University of Florida • Results reveal that neither Hispanics nor Anglos use the ethnicity of political candidates as a major determinant for attitude formation, voting intentions, or similarity perceptions. However, as Hispanic’s strength of ethnic identity increases they demonstrate more favorable attitudes, intentions to vote for, and perceptions of similarity towards a candidate that endorses same-sex marriage. Conversely, stronger ethnic identity of Anglos increases their likelihood of voting for, perceiving similarity to and holding more favorable attitudes toward advocates of anti same sex messages.

Roughing the passer: Audience-held and applied stereotypes of NFL quarterbacks • Patrick Ferrucci, University of Colorado-Boulder; Edson Tandoc, Nanyang Technological University • This experiment tested stereotypes and message credibility associated with Black and White quarterbacks. Participants were asked to rate quarterbacks based on stereotypes identified in previous literature and then were asked to rate the credibility of stereotype- consistent or inconsistent messages. The study found that participants stereotyped both races, but Black participants actually stereotyped more strongly. Only messages concerning stereotype-consistent descriptors of White quarterbacks were rated as more credible. These results are interpreted utilizing social identity theory.

How Twitter User’s Framed Sebastien De La Cruz’s Anthem Singing at the 2013 NBA FInals • Melita Garza, Texas Christian University, Bob Schieffer College of Communication, School of Journalism • This study examines the way new and legacy media curated Twitter reaction to fifth grader Sebastien De La Cruz’s performance of the Star-Spangled Banner at the NBA Finals in 2013. Using framing theory, the author identified positive and negative frames, many embedded in stereotypes. The author argues that Twitter is a new medium conveying an old othering message: Mexican Americans are not truly Americans, making them illegitimate interpreters of the nation’s authentic tune.

Framing #Ferguson: A comparative analysis of media tweets in the U.S., U.K., Spain, and France • Summer Harlow, Florida State University; Lauren Antista, Florida State University • Events in #Ferguson, Missouri brought race relations under a global spotlight. This computerized content analysis of thousands of Twitter posts from the public, media outlets, and journalists in the United States, United Kingdom, Spain, and France indicated the U.S. was more likely to negatively frame protestors. As protests continued, media outlets’ and journalists’ use of racism frames and positive protest frames increased, suggesting they might take cues from global Twitter discussions and public discourse.

The Black Press Tweets: How the Social Media Platform Mediates Race Discourse • Ben LaPoe; Katie Lever • This study analyzed 46,216 Black press tweets and 46,226 mainstream press tweets. The Black press tweeted more about race and history. The mainstream press tweeted about race less than 1% of the time; instead, the mainstream press focused on issues such as education and crime. These findings suggest that news organizations like the Black press are still very much needed and are using social media to interact on a more personal level with their audience.

More Sources, Greater Harm: Source Magnification of Racist Hate Messages on Social Media • Roselyn J. Lee-Won, The Ohio State University; Hyunjin (Jin) Song, The Ohio State University; Ji Young Lee, The Ohio State University; Sung Gwan Park, Seoul National University • This research examined source magnification of racist messages in social media contexts. An online experiment was conducted with a non-college sample of Black participants (N = 115). Relative to those who viewed single-source anti-Black tweets, those who viewed multiple-source anti-Black tweets experienced greater emotional distress, which in turn increased attribution of negative social outcomes to prejudice. Overall, the findings suggest that multiple sources magnify the psychological harm inflicted by racist messages upon target minority members.

Latino youth, digital media and political news • Regina Marchi, Rutgers University • This paper discusses how low-income Latino youth use digital technologies to network with communities of interest, in the process learning about current events and political issues. Contrary to previous assumptions about the digital divide, this study found that these youth were very plugged in to the Internet, getting most of their news information online. Yet, a different digital divide was evident, in which Internet-savvy youth had access to a timelier variety of news than their parents, many of whom had low levels of formal education and worked in jobs that did not cultivate digital skills. In a reversal of typical parent-child roles, youth in this study were found to be news translators for their parents, explaining US news stories and their implications. In seeking information and creating or posting diverse types of content online, they gained participatory and deliberative skills useful for civic engagement in a democracy.

Celebrity capital of actresses of color: A mixed methods study • Yulia Medvedeva, University of Missouri; Cynthia Frisby, University of Missouri; Joseph Moore, University of Missouri • This mixed-methods study explored the coverage of two Oscar-winning actresses of color, Lupita Nyong’o and Halle Berry, to identify how their celebrity capital was conveyed by entertainment news. Contrary to expectations set by understanding of the concept of colorism, darker-skinned Nyong’o’ racial capital was stated in the news less prominently than was racial capital of lighter-skinned Berry. Actresses’ celebrity capital and ways of conversion of capital is visualized in Venn diagrams.

Blogging Ferguson in Black and White • Doug Mendenhall, Abilene Christian University • Blog posts and appended comments about the shooting of a black teen in Ferguson, Missouri, are analyzed for differences based on the race of the authors. Using Diction 7.0, a common word-counting program, seven differences are seen, with black-authored posts higher in commonality, cognition, hardship, human-interest, satisfaction, and self-reference, while white-authored posts are higher in use of collectives. From a social identity perspective, tonal differences do not appear to constitute differing levels of incivility.

Who’s in Charge Here? Leadership Attributions Between African American Coaches and White Quarterbacks • James Rada, Ithaca College; K. Tim Wulfemeyer, San Diego State University • Previous research has demonstrated that mass-mediated coverage of professional and intercollegiate sports often presents biased coverage of African American athletes vis-à-vis white athletes. This research sought to determine whether Super Bowl media coverage was more likely to ascribe leadership qualities to African American head coaches or white quarterbacks. The content analysis of the coverage of four Super Bowls found that ten news organizations did a satisfactory job of providing equal coverage of both groups.

Immigration News in the U.S. African American Press and the Legacy of the Black Atlantic • Ilia Rodriguez, University of New Mexico • This research focused on coverage of immigration in the U.S. Black press between 2006 and 2014 to examine how news discourse activates positions of identification for members of the African diaspora by invoking the thematic cluster of the Black Atlantic as a cultural formation–as conceptualized by Paul Gilroy (1993). The research questions guiding the analysis were: How does news coverage of immigration in African-American newspapers construct geospatial mappings, identity boundaries, and cultural referents for members of the African Diaspora? How does coverage maintain the legacy of the Black Atlantic? The analysis draws on models of critical discourse analysis of news media (Fairclough, 1995; Richardson, 2000; Reisigl & Wodak, 2001) to discuss thematic clusters in coverage and, within these, rhetorical constructions and referential strategies used to avow and ascribe positions of identification. The discussion is based on a thematic analysis of 2,161 items and close linguistic analysis of 98 articles in English-language newspapers serving U.S. African-Americans as well as Haitian, Jamaican, greater Caribbean, and African immigrant communities in the United States.

Applying Health Behavior Theories to the Promotion of Breast Tissue Donation Among Asian Americans • Kelly Kaufhold, Texas State University; Autumn Shafer, Texas Tech University; Yunjuan Luo, Texas Tech University • Asian-American women are underrepresented in the donor pool of healthy breast tissue samples used by breast cancer researchers, despite communication efforts that have resulted in an increase in Caucasian donors. Based on the health belief model and the theory of planned behavior, a survey of adult women in the U.S. (n = 1,317), oversampling for Asian women, found key differences in beliefs related to breast cancer and breast tissue donation between Asian and Caucasian women.

Citizen Framing of Ferguson in 2015- Visual Representations on Twitter and Facebook • Gabriel Tait, Arkansas State University; Mia Moody-Ramirez, Baylor University; LIllie Fears; Ceeon Smith, Arizona State University; Brenda Randle, Arkansas State University • Using a critical race lens and both framing and medium theories, this study explores the cultural narratives citizens used in their framing of the Ferguson riots in the aftermath of Michael Brown’s death in 2014. Findings indicate citizens posted their photographs, texts, and videos after Michael Brown’s death in 2014, and how the messages differed across platforms. Furthermore, the research grappled with the fact pictures do not lie, but they can be misinterpreted. At least that is what researchers argue, particularly when it comes to interpreting depictions of African Americans.

Active Video Game Play in African American Children: The Effect of Gender and BMI on Exertion and Enjoyment • Xueying Zhang; Bijie Bie; Dylan McLemore, Univ of Alabama; Lindsey Conlin, The University of Southern Mississippi; Kim Bissell, University of Alabama; Scott Parrott; Perrin Lowrey • Applying the Health Promotion Model (HPM), this study tested the influence of gender, BMI type and past exercise experience on African American children’s Wii game-playing experience and heart rate. A field experiment was conducted with a convenience sample of 51 African American children. Overall, the findings supported the proposition of using Wii games as alternative means of physical activity in African American children and suggested choosing games based on children’s background information to maximize the effectiveness.

Student Paper
With Liberty and Justice for Some: The Cultural Forum of Black Lives Matter • Laurena Bernabo, University of Iowa •
This paper interrogates the dramatization of themes central to the Black Lives Matter movement. Ideological analysis and textual analysis are applied to recent scripted programming, according to the cultural forum model, in order to examine verbal and visual cues. A number of dominant themes are made apparent through this research: programming dealing with current race-related concerns take up issues of (1) the innocence or guilt of Black men; (2) the justifications made by White participants; (3) the nature of incidents as isolated or systemic; (4) prior indication of White participants’ bigotry; (5) aftermath of events, and (6) prognoses for the future. This study conclude that these programs work ideologically and visually to circulate competing and even contradictory discourses, and to disturb racial binaries that prohibit post-race discourses.

Picture a Protest: Analyzing Images Tweeted from Ferguson • Holly Cowart, University of Florida • The shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri created a media storm that coalesced around a series of events. This research examines nine major media outlets’ depiction of those events on Twitter using visual framing analysis. Findings suggest that the images of Ferguson were of divided forces working against each other. On one side stood white police. On the other, black protestors were in motion. The two sides rarely existed in the same image.

Unaccompanied Immigrant Children: An Exploration of the Presidential Influence on Media Agenda-Building and Framing • Lourdes Cueva Chacon, University of Texas at Austin • An examination of the media coverage of the influx of unaccompanied immigrant children through the US Southern border between 2012 and 2014, by national and border-state newspapers, suggests that the president of the United States may strongly influence the media agenda-building, moderately influence the process of media framing, and confirms that border-state newspapers are more likely to portray immigrants negatively.

Mirror, Mirror on the wall, are you treating minorities fair at all? An analysis of channel and genre differences in minority representation on television. • Serena Daalmans, Radboud University; Ceciel ter Horst, Radboud University Nijmegen, The Netherlands • This study focused on the representation of minority groups on television, following the idea(l) that television as a mirror of society should convey a well-balanced representation of society. Previous research has shown that television can have an impact on how the public at large perceives the world and influences individuals’ self-image and image of others. Results reveal an underrepresentation of women, seniors and sexual minorities and stereotyping in the representation of women and ethnic minorities.

Defend More, Exploit Less: African Americans on Media Trust and News Use After Ferguson • Shane Graber, The University of Texas-Austin • In August 2014, an unarmed African American teenager was fatally gunned down by a white police officer in Ferguson, Mo. Considering the poor history of race reporting in the past, this study seeks to explore the impact that the mainstream news media’s Ferguson coverage had on African Americans. Based on in-depth interviews, respondents’ perceptions suggest that news trust might not impact consumption habits as acutely as previously thought.

‘Wilding’ Revisited: How African American and Hispanic Newspapers Covered the Central Park Jogger Story • Robin Hoecker, Northwestern University • Using Critical Race Theory as a lens, this paper examines the Central Park Jogger case, where five black and Latino teenagers were convicted of raping a white woman and later acquitted. I argue that not only did the original media coverage rely on deeply-rooted racial stereotypes, but much of the scholarship about race, crime and news has also privileged white perspectives. This project looks specifically at how black and Spanish-language newspapers covered the case.

Integrating Disability: Increasing and Improving the Portrayal of People with Disabilities with Positive Media Images • Davi Kallman, Washington State University • Disabled individuals comprise the largest minority group in the world, yet they are the most underrepresented minority group. Despite their large numbers, disabled individuals not only encounter individual prejudice, this prejudice is institutionalized in society. In an effort to reduce negative attitudes toward disabled individuals, this study used a video clip showing positive disability exemplars. Implicit and explicit measures of prejudice were compared to find that ablebodied student implicit bias was more entrenched than expected.

The Influence of individuals’ racial identification with media characters in crime dramas on moral judgment: the moderating role of emotional reactions • Jisu Kim; Yiran Zhang • This study explored the effects of racial identification among White people with media characters in crime dramas on moral judgment toward criminals from different racial groups. Additionally, two distinct emotions are employed as moderators in the relationship. The result of racial identification was opposed to our expectation, but subsequent analysis showed White people with activated racial identity had more feelings of anger toward the Black criminal, but judged the crime itself less morally wrong.

Self-referencing and ethnic advertising effectiveness: The influence of ad model ethnicity, cultural cues and acculturation level • Xiaoyan Liu • Asian minorities’ market attracts more and more attentions from scholars and advertisers today. This study investigated the effect of the race of ad characters, cultural cues in advertising and acculturation level on advertising and brand evaluation among Asian ethnic minorities. Additionally, this study explored the self-referencing as a mediating role of the effectiveness of the model ethnicity and cultural cues portrayed in advertising. A 2 (Asian characters vs. White characters) by 2 (Asian cultural cues vs. American cultural cues) by 2 (low acculturated minorities vs. high acculturated minorities) between-subjects factorial design was employed to test the hypotheses. The results indicated that the congruent advertising activated more self-referencing than the incongruent advertising among Asian minorities. In addition, acculturation level only increases self-referencing under majority cultural cues. Moreover, self-referencing mediates the effect of model ethnicity and cultural cues on the attitude toward the advertising and brand.

How Long, Not Long: The Disappearance of the Selma to Montgomery Marches in Anniversary Coverage • Meagan Manning, University of Minnesota • In spite of its weeks long grip on the nation’s conscious, the rare support of rights leaders, the American populace, and federal government officials, as well as its instrumental role in the passage of the 1965 Voting Rights Act, Selma anniversaries are not moments when we collectively reflect on the state of American race relations. We do not revisit the text of speeches by Hosea Williams and Rosa Parks given in March 1965 like we revisit the Dream. Nor do we mourn the deaths of Jimmie Lee Jackson, James Earl Reeb, and Viola Liuzzo collectively as a nation in the way we recollect Malcolm X or Martin Luther King. As scholars, it is important not only to document the recent past, but also to examine which facets of that past fall out of memory as time progresses. The Selma to Montgomery march represents a nationally recognized, yet marginally commemorated lieux de memoire of the civil rights era. As such, it represents an important component for analyzing what facets of the movement we as a society neglect to commemorate. To that end, this research traces how six dominant press outlets cover Selma’s anniversary. Analyzing coverage of a prominent, yet infrequently commemorated civil rights event sheds light on why some historical events are not significant forces in the cannons of public memory and provides insight into what types of contemporary social, political, and cultural circumstances influence that compromised position.

#STEMdiversity: Utilizing Twitter to Increase Awareness about Diversity in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics • Leticia Williams, Howard University • The purpose of this study is to explore whether communication technologies such as Twitter, can increase knowledge and awareness of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) diversity. A textual analysis of 1,520 tweets that contained the hashtags #STEMDiversity and #BlackandSTEM was used to explore the type of content shared on Twitter about STEM diversity, and the standpoint of the individual posting the tweet. This analysis was supported by the theoretical framework of standpoint theory. Findings are consistent with previous research that found information sharing is a primary function of Twitter. Tweets about information and role models were the most discussed topics. Additionally, minorities, specifically African Americans and women, did tweet information about STEM diversity in ways that were influenced by their multiple standpoints of race, gender, and STEM.

2015 Abstracts

Media Management and Economics 2015 Abstracts

Impact of Market Competition and the Internet on Journalistic Performance in Developing and Transitional Countries • Adam Jacobsson, Stockholm university, department of Economics; Ann Hollifield, University of Georgia; Lee Becker, University of Georgia; Tudor Vlad, University of Georgia; Eva-Maria Jacobsson, Royal Institute of Technology (KTH) • This study uses a sample of national media markets to examine the relationship between increasing competition in the advertising market and overall journalistic performance. The findings suggest that as the news media’s share of the advertising market falls in a country, so, too, does the quality of the journalism produced by that country’s news media. It suggests that as Internet penetration increases in a country, it negatively affects the overall quality of journalism produced.

Disruptors versus Incubators: How journalists covered the organizational change at the New Republic under techonology entrepreneur Chris Hughes. • Monica Chadha, Walter Cronkite School of Journalism & Mass Communication, Arizona State University • The impasse between the editorial and managerial sides of a news organization is at the center of the study proposed here. In particular, this paper, through the theoretical lens of organizational change and professional/work identity, looks at how the news media perceived and reported on the differences between the editorial and management staff at the New Republic. This magazine has at its helm, one of the Facebook founders, Chris Hughes, with no historic ties to the news industry. Differences with his high profile editorial staff led to last minute resignations by editors and reporters en masse at the New Republic, and this issue made the news several times. This examination of the news coverage of these differences is an attempt to understand how news media portrayed this event and created a narrative around a key event as an interpretive community. Analyzing the media texts surrounding this issue will help scholars and professionals understand how journalists think of and discuss such differences between the business and editorial sides. This understanding then may lead to management and editorial staff navigating through organizational change more effectively, rather than leading to group behavior that would be detrimental to the company.

Marketing Theatrical Films for the Mobile Platform: The Roles of Web Content/Social Media, Brand Extension, WOM, and Windowing Strategies • Sang-Hyun Nam; Sylvia Chan-Olmsted, University of Florida; Byeng-Hee Chang • This study explored the effects of various marketing factors on the distribution of theatrical films on the mobile platform. Research questions related to certain marketing activities such as web content/social media, brand extension, eWOM, and windowing strategies were examined using the mobile movie industry data of South Korea. The result showed that certain web content activities, brand extension via star power and sequels, as well as movie length were significantly associated with mobile film performance.

An Economic Perspective on the Diffusion of Communication Media • John dimmick, School of Communication, Ohio State University • The diffusion curves representing media adoption have been repeatedly shown to fit the logistic growth equation. This paper gives an extended theoretical interpretation of r and K, the parameters of the equation in economic terms. The paper analyzes data representing one measure of K, the University of Michigan Consumer Sentiment Index (CSI). Analysis of the link between the CSI and computer and cellphone change scores shows a positive relationship, indicating that the perceived state of the US economy influences diffusion patterns.

Profitability in Newspapers: Industry Benchmarking Data Shows Newspaper Industry Makes Money and is Less Risky Following Layoffs and Restructuring • Keith Herndon, University of Georgia • This study of proprietary financial benchmarking data shows the newspaper industry is profitable and that financial risk has diminished following years of consolidation and employee downsizing. It expands on recent public newspaper company research and confirms the industry is profitable across multiple revenue ranges. The study provides a timely financial review for an industry poised for more unsettling consolidation given that newspapers shed more than 260,000 workers since reaching peak employment in 1991.

Developing New Organizational Identity: Merger of St. Louis Public Radio and the St. Louis Beacon • Amber Hinsley • Using St. Louis Public Radio and the St. Louis Beacon as a case study, this research applies social identity theory to examine the pre- and post-merger identities of the organizations and their workers. The merger experience is a guide for other institutions considering similar moves. By understanding the impact of a merger, news organizations can better manage the process by reinforcing how changes align with the pre-merger organizations’ identity and the new emerging identity.

Success factors of news parent brand: Focusing on parent brand equity, online brand extension and open branding • J. Sonia Huang; Jacie Yang • The study examines the success factors that influence news parent brands and tested the applicability of brand-related concepts such as brand equity, brand extension, and open branding in the context of 4 national newspapers and their online extensions in Taiwan. Using data from a national online survey (N = 907), results show that 4 factors, i.e., extended brand loyalty, parent brand awareness, perceived quality of parent brand, and brand portfolio quality variance, have direct effects on parent brand loyalty and 2 factors, i.e., open branding and brand awareness, have indirect effects through third variables. Generally, the study provides evidence that online brand extension is the driving force in the explanation of readers’ loyalty toward news parents.

Over-The-Top services on mobile networks: Lessons from an international comparison of regulatory regimes • Krishna Jayakar, Penn State University; EUN-A PARK, University of New Haven • This paper is an international comparative analysis of emerging frameworks for the regulation of Over-The-Top content providers on mobile networks, specifically with respect to the prices that access providers may charge to content providers to transport and terminate the traffic to the end user. Selected national regulations or proposals are compared to identify major issues and potential solutions to the problems of OTT regulation. Four benchmarking principles are identified. The Federal Communications Commission’s (2015) Net Neutrality Rules are then assessed in light of these benchmarking principles.

The Internet and Changes in Media Industry: A Cross-National Examination • Sung Wook Ji, Southern Illinois University, Carbondale • Most studies concerned with the effect of the Internet on media industries have focused on the current reduction of revenues in an individual medium, rather than on the ways in which the Internet is changing the media industry as a whole. The present study explores the economic effects of the Internet on structural change in traditional media industries. Based on country-level, dynamic panel data from 51 countries between 2009 and 2013, this paper finds that an increase in broadband Internet penetration leads to a shift in the balance of the revenues from advertising toward direct payments: a 1% increase in broadband penetration will cause a 0.1% shift in revenues from advertising toward direct payments. These findings correspond with the trends that previous studies have found in the U.S. media industry.

Brand Extension in the Film Industry: Performance of Film Adaptations and Sequels • Dam Hee Kim, University of Michigan • Focusing on film adaptations and sequels as brand extension, this paper analyzed 2,488 films released between 2010 and 2013 in the U.S. to examine what types of films were successful. Results suggested that sequels generated more domestic box office gross than non-sequels. Among sequels, film adaptations appeared to generate more gross than non-film adaptations. Among adaptation sequels, those with new names, with their dissimilarity to parent brands, generated more box office gross than numbered ones.

Toward a Tyranny of Tweeters? The Institutionalization of Social TV Analytics as Market Information Regime • Allie Kosterich, Rutgers University; Philip M. Napoli, Rutgers University • Changes in the ways that audiences use television, and the ways in which such usage can be measured, raise the possibility of a transformation of the currency that fuels the audience marketplace. Specifically, it appears at this point that social media analytics are beginning to play a role in how television program success is measured, and in how advertising dollars are allocated across programs (Shively, 2014; Wright, 2014). Essentially, then, the emergence of social TV analytics represents the possibility of a new market information regime taking hold in the audience marketplace. Utilizing industry trade documents as a window into industry dynamics and discourses, this paper provides an account of the recent emergence and usage of social TV analytics in the U.S. television industry as a means of exploring the process of institutionalization of a new market information regime. An institutional theory framework is applied to the ongoing dynamics between established and emergent market information regimes in the television audience marketplace in an effort to better understand if and how a new market information regime can become institutionalized. As the analysis shows, traditional audience exposure metrics are insufficient for all stakeholders. Moreover, new social media metrics do appear to have genuine economic value for those engaged in the process of buying and selling audiences. Current evidence suggests that the television industry is at a point in its evolution at which it can – even must – operate under multiple market regimes and embrace multiple value criteria.

Crossing the Interregnum: Group Cohesion among Adaptive Journalists • Mark Poepsel, Southern Illinois University in Edwardsville • What keeps a cohort of journalists together working in the field at a high level through shifts in management, ownership, technology and medium? Using group cohesion theory and concepts of task and social cohesion, group pride, and the cybernetic model of group cohesion, this study answers with concrete qualitative data what qualities of the group, cherished norms, values and best practices were most helpful for fostering cohesion in the interest of survival and growth. The findings of this draft essay should ultimately prove useful for future theorizing in the areas of change management in the journalism field and in journalism pedagogy. Key findings include that task cohesion dominates over social cohesion in this group of veteran journalists and that bridging the gap to build support for the next generation group pride is key.

Netflix versus Hulu: A Comparative Analysis • Ronen Shay, University of Florida • The purpose of this mixed-methods case study is to provide a comparative analysis of the Netflix and Hulu business models in order to assess whether both business models are sustainable over time. The theoretical framework draws from conceptual business model analysis, Porter’s (1985) value chain, and Anderson’s (2006) long-tail economics. Secondary data from SNL Kagan is used in combination with an original content analysis to test Netflix’s and Hulu’s October, 2013 libraries for competitive advantages, the presence of the long-tail phenomenon, and whether or not the ownership structure of either firm affects the viability of their business models.

So Who Needs a Terrestrial Signal? Internet Radio Entrepreneurs Compete in Two Kansas Markets • Steve Smethers, Kansas State University • This case study focuses on the primary experiences of two Kansas media entrepreneurs using audio streaming to establish simulated radio services in markets where new terrestrial signals are not available. Buoyed by current consumer interest in streaming, subjects profiled here have fashioned their Internet radio stations into bonafide competitors for listeners and advertising dollars. Interviews and business artifacts reveal two different monetization models for these stations that emphasize local information and market-specific music programming.

Sharing the Pain? An Examination of CEO and Executive Compensation of Publicly Traded Newspaper Companies • John Soloski, U of Georgia; Hugh J. Martin, Ohio University • This paper examines compensation of newspaper company CEOs and other top executives and compares compensation with key measures of their companies’ financial performance and employment levels. Fixed-effects regressions found only a small relationship between CEO pay and companies’ market value for 2000-2013. There was no relationship between pay and return-on-assets or return-on-equity. Unobserved characteristics of individual companies are associated with CEO pay. Implications for the financial health of newspaper companies are discussed in the study.

Can net neutrality coverage maintain value neutrality? • Joseph Yoo, The University of Texas at Austin • Comcast, a media conglomerate providing Internet service, owns NBC Universal News Group, while parent companies for other television news stations are not Internet Service Providers. ISPs have been opposed to net neutrality because it can hurt their profit. This study examines whether parental ownership for broadcasting news influences net neutrality coverage. The results indicate that rather than ownership status, the political ideology for each broadcasting news outlet led to different attitudes towards net neutrality coverage.

2015 Abstracts

Media Ethics 2015 Abstracts

Open Competition
How do ads mean? A mutualist theory of advertising ethics. • Margaret Duffy, Missouri School of Journalism; Esther Thorson, Missouri School of Journalism; Tatsiana Karaliova, Missouri School of Journalism; Heesook Choi •
This gathered qualitative data about people’s responses to ads identified as ethically problematic based on guidelines and conventions established by advertising ethics critics and the FTC. It analyzed people’s responses to the ads using social constructionist, rhetorical, and dramatistic theoretical lenses. Applying Symbolic Convergence Theory, the study found significantly different communities of meaning as individuals interpreted video commercials. It suggests a new approach to studying advertising ethics.

The Press Complaints Commission is Dead; Long Live the IPSO? • Mark Harmon, University of Tennessee; Abhijit Mazumdar, University of Tennessee • The authors tally 57 monthly Press Complaint Commission complaint resolution reports, dating from January 2010 to September 2014. The sums from each category were expressed as a percentage of all 28,457 complaints. The data show that PCC was something of a paper tiger. This quantitive analysis led to a qualitative review of the ethical need for, potential best practices of, and opportunities facing the United Kingdom’s new Independent Press Standards Organization, the PCC successor organization.

Journalism Under Attack: The Charlie Hebdo Covers and Reconsiderations of Journalistic Norms • Joy Jenkins, University of Missouri; Edson Tandoc, Nanyang Technological University • The terrorist attack on the satirical French newspaper Charlie Hebdo created an ethical dilemma for U.S. news organizations. In reporting on the attacks, news organizations had to decide whether to republish examples of the magazine’s controversial cartoons. This decision highlighted an otherwise taken-for-granted assumption — that the journalistic field is governed by a set of norms, but these norms may, at times, be at odds. This study used qualitative textual analysis to shed light on the journalistic norms involved in American journalists’ own discourses explaining their respective editorial decisions to republish or not to republish the Charlie Hebdo cartoons. The resulting analysis demonstrates how a shock to the journalistic profession can challenge existing norms as well as bring new norms to light.

The Death of Corporal Miller: Omission, Transparency and the Ethics of Embedded Journalism • Miles Maguire, University of Wisconsin Oshkosh • The New York Times won acclaim for its coverage of the second battle of Falluja in November 2014. But its initial articles left out a crucial detail, that a Marine corporal was killed while aiding two of the paper’s journalists. Over four years the Times published four different versions of the death of the Marine without ever fully explaining the circumstances that surrounded the incident or attempting to reconcile the differences in its accounts. On the contrary the newspaper has refused to articulate what factors led to the withholding of information about Miller’s death, a position that is clearly at odds with its own code of conduct as well as with the growing emphasis on transparency as a cornerstone of journalism ethics. This study, based on a review of the written record and interviews with key participants, sheds new light on the ethical challenges of embedded journalism and shows how the embedding process can work to shape news accounts to support military objectives at the expense of traditional journalistic values. The paper includes an examination of the way that the military has adopted transparency as a key element of what it calls inform and influence activities, which are now identified as part of combat power. The conclusion suggests that a commitment to transparency on the part of news organizations would be a way to regain independence in battlefield reporting by embedded journalists.

Examining Intention of Illegal Downloading: An Integration of Social Norms and Ethical Ideologies • Namkee Park, Yonsei University, South Korea; Hyun Sook Oh, Pyeongtaek University, South Korea; Naewon Kang, Dankook University, South Korea; Seohee Sohn, Yonsei University, South Korea • This study investigated applicability of ethical ideologies reflected by moral idealism and relativism, together with social norms, to the context of illegal downloading. The study found that intention of illegal downloading was dissimilar among four groups of ethical ideologies; situationists, absolutists, subjectivists, and exceptionists. Injunctive norm was a critical factor that affected illegal downloading intention, yet only for situationists and absolutists. For subjectivists and exceptionists, ego-involvement played a critical role in explaining the intention.

Media Ethics Theorizing, Reoriented: A Shift in Focus for Individual-Level Analyses • Patrick Plaisance, Colorado State University • This project argues that multidisciplinary methods and work to reconsider key concepts are critical if media ethics scholarship is to continue to mature. It identifies three dimensions of a reoriented framework for media ethics theory: one that reconceptualizes inquiry at the individual level; another that situates media technology in assessments of autonomous agency and organizational affiliation; and a third that applies formalist virtue ethics as the best framework for normative claims arising from the first two.

NGOs as newsmakers: boon or bane? A normative evaluation • Matthew Powers, University of Washington – Seattle • In recent years, non-governmental organizations (NGOs) have assumed a growing role in shaping – and in some cases directly producing – news. What are the normative implications of this development? Drawing on normative traditions of public communication, this paper identifies four roles NGOs are tasked with performing: expert, advocate, facilitator and critic. To date, research suggests NGOs align most closely with representative liberal and democratic participatory ideals of journalism, while marginalizing deliberative and radical traditions.

When White Reporters Cover Race: The news media, objectivity and community (dis-)trust • SUE ROBINSON, University of Wisconsin-Madison; Kathleen Culver, University of Wisconsin-Madison • When white reporters cover issues involving race, they often fall back on traditional, passive practices of objectivity, such as deferring to official sources and remaining separate from communities. Using in-depth interviews combined with textual analysis in a case study of one mid-western city struggling with race, we explore the ethical tensions between the commitment to neutrality and the need for trust building. This essay argues for an active objectivity focused on loyalty to all citizens.

An update on advertising ethics: an organization’s perspectives • Erin Schauster, Bradley University • Ethical problems in advertising continue to exist but an update on these problems from an organizational approach is needed (Drumwright, 2007; Drumwright & Murphy, 2009). Forty-five one-on-one interviews were conducted regarding perceptions of advertising ethics. Findings suggest that ethical problems exist such as treating others fairly, behaving honestly, respecting consumers’ privacy and maintaining creative integrity. The implications of creative integrity and an organizational approach as ethical relativism are presented.

Carol Burnett Award
Ethics in Design: The Public Sphere and Value Considerations in Online Commenting Development • Kristen Bialik, University of Wisconsin-Madison •
Drawing on the work of Habermas’ public sphere and discourse ethics, as well as user-interface design and Value Sensitive Design theory in technology, this paper examines whether improved online comment system policies and design can help foster a more robust form of the public sphere. The study raises larger questions of how values within traditional journalism, as well as values underpinning democratic societies, can be emphasized in the structural spaces of online public forums.

The many faces of television’s public moral discourse? Exploring genre differences in the representation of morality in prime time television • Serena Daalmans, Radboud University • This study is focused on differences between TV genres (news, entertainment & fiction) in the representation of morality on television. We conducted a quantitative content analysis, based on a sample of prime-time television programs (2012) (N = 485). The results reveal distinct differences between the genres concerning the representation of moral domains, moral themes, types of morality and moral complexity, and striking similarities regarding moral communities as beacons of moral accountability.

Moderating Marius: Ethical Language and Representation of Animal Advocacy in Mass Media Coverage of the Copenhagen Zoo Saga • Christina DeWalt, The University of Oklahoma • Ethical theory is used in this study to assess news coverage of the Copenhagen Zoo’s decision to euthanize a healthy giraffe and the subsequent public outcry regarding the animal’s death. This paper examines twenty-six print, broadcast, and radio news pieces utilizing ethical frameworks derived from the widely used philosophies of Kant and Bentham. The types of news frames deployed as well as the willingness of mainstream media outlets to expand public exposure to broader social issues related to animal captivity and welfare, and their willingness to include non-traditional sourcing in meaningful and balanced ways was examined through in-depth, textual analysis. Findings indicate that while the mass media did extend moral considerations to the nonhuman subject through implicit means, news production norms, practices, and routines continued to hinder advancement of alternative voices and expansion of social exposure to broader ethical issues inherent in the story.

Aggregation and Virtue Ethics • Stan Diel, University of Alabama • As consumers increasingly look to the Internet to find news and traditional news organizations shed jobs, the demand for original news content online has come to exceed supply. To fill the void, websites, both digital-native and those associated with legacy news media, have turned to aggregation so quickly that the practice has developed faster than both legal and ethical standards that might moderate it. While deontological systems of ethics often guide traditional media, such rule-based codes are not easily applied to digital news practices. A system of virtue-based ethics grounded in an arch-virtue of truthfulness and moderated by the virtues of fairness, non- malevolence and temperance, and a standardized definition of terms, are proposed to help guide aggregation practices.

Analysis of moral argumentation in newspaper editorial contents with Kohlberg’s moral development model • Yayu Feng, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign • This study evaluates moral reasoning stages addressed in editorial pieces regarding rape culture from two newspapers in Athens, Ohio, with Kohlberg’s Moral Development Model. An analytical system was developed based on Critical Discourse Analysis and Moral Development Theory, which contributes a new approach to investigating media moral messages. The study details the different patterns of moral reasoning stages represented in the newspapers and offers a case study of editorials’ performance as moral educators.

Peace Journalism and Radical Media Ethics • Marta Lukacovic, Wayne State University • The radical characteristics of peace journalism position it as a model that expands the current understandings of normative media theory. Hence, peace journalism echoes the most innovative calls of media ethicists such as Ward’s proposition of radical media ethics. Peace journalists and citizens have to face constraints that are posed by cultural and structural violence when attempting to reflect on international conflicts and crises in peace journalistic/conflict sensitive manner.

The point of debating ethics in journalism: consensus or compromise and the rehabilitation of common sense as a way toward solidarit • Laura Moorhead, Stanford University • Philosopher and media gadfly Habermas in the newsroom? This paper — through the frame of Habermas’s discourse ethics — highlights a path for debating ethics in journalism using rational-critical discussion, which can lead to consensus or compromise through a move from individual to collective community interests. The paper considers the rehabilitation of common sense, through emerging technology and an interdisciplinary approach. The point of debating ethics in journalism surfaces as the hope for solidarity despite increasing pluralism.

Weekly Newsmagazines’ Framing of Obesity, Responsibility Attribution, and Moral Discourses • Lok Pokhrel, Washington State University • This paper presents a study of how obesity-related health issues in the United States are represented in four American weekly magazines: Newsweek, Time, The Weekly Standard, and National Review. The paper particularly examined the media’s attribution of responsibility for the problem of obesity, that is, whether the issue constitutes an individual or collective responsibility. The paper also argues that the news media’s framing of obesity-related health issues, through the use of various discursive and framing tactics, raises ethical concerns. Through analysis of weekly news magazine discourses, the study finds two themes that raise ethical concern: the weekly publications (a) primarily discussed the problem of obesity in terms of either individual or societal responsibility; (b) highlighted the ethical concerns from appeals to both personal responsibility and a sense of obligation to promote the health of others and fulfill the duty to avoid becoming an unfair burden to others.

Toward an ethic of personal technologies: Moral implications found in the fruition of man-computer symbiosis • Rhema Zlaten, Colorado State University • The impending fruition of man-computer symbiosis suggests a shift towards society’s acceptance of human partnership with technology. Increased intimacy between humans and machines creates a need for understanding individual rights in modern society’s transmedia paradigm. This paper calls for the creation of an ethic of personal technologies; a partnership of understanding how society grew to accept the full integration of technology into daily life and the rights of each digital footprint in a computer-mediated society.

Special Call For New Horizons in Media Ethics
A Duty to Freedom: Conceptualizing Platform Ethics • Brett Johnson, University of Missouri • This
paper makes two arguments. First, the field of media ethics should incorporate ethical analyses of the relationship between digital communication intermediaries (e.g. Facebook and Twitter) and their users. Second, these intermediaries should abide by a primary duty to protect the users’ freedom to speak via their platforms, followed by a secondary duty to mitigate potential harms caused by users’ speech. The paper synthesizes theories of intermediary liability and corporate media ethics to make this argument.

The Ethical Implications of Participatory Culture in a New Media Environment: A Critical Case Study of Veronica Mars • Murray Meetze, University of Colorado Boulder • In a fast-paced media landscape where producer and consumer relationships are constantly being renegotiated, the ethical implications of this participatory culture must be addressed. This article explores current literature on participatory culture through the lens of a case study of the Veronica Mars 2013 Kickstarted film. The Veronica Mars Kickstarter provides a unique view of the strengths of audience involvement in media content production. The Belmont Report social science principles for human subject research will be utilized in this case study examination along with the ethical framework of W.D. Ross’ duty-based ethics. This analysis aims to establish tangible ethical guidelines for media industry production in an unstable media environment.

What Constitutes Good Work in Journalism Education • Caryn Winters, University of Louisiana at Lafayette • What is the good work educators –especially journalism educators –are obliged to do in consideration of their simultaneous roles as members of a democratic community and members of professional communities?Rather than focus on specific professional practices, I have chosen to emphasize the necessity for professionals –and especially those professionals who play key roles in building the democratic capacity –to understand the core principles of their professional realms. When journalists and journalism educators engage in professional activity that is informed by these principles, they have the potential to transform their professional realms and democracy.

2015 Abstracts

Mass Communication and Society 2015 Abstracts

Open Competition
Building Social Capital. The Role of News and Political Discussion Tie Strength in Fostering Reciprocity • Alberto Ardèvol-Abreu, University of Vienna; Trevor Diehl, University of Vienna; Homero Gil de Zúñiga, University of Vienna •
This study explores the role of news and discussion network tie strength in developing the social and civic norm of reciprocity. It argues that interactions of mutual benefit and exchange are an outcome of media use and political discussion, which in turn, directly leads to an increase in community connectedness and social capital. Informational uses of media directly predicted attitudes of reciprocity and social capital, though only conversation with weak ties led to reciprocity.

News Media Literacy and Political Engagement: What’s the Connection? • Seth Ashley, Boise State University; Adam Maksl, Indiana University Southeast; Stephanie Craft, University of Illinois • Scholars and educators have long hoped and assumed that media education is positively related to pro-social goals such as political and civic engagement. Others worry about the possibility of alienation and disengagement. With a focus on news, this study surveyed 537 college students and found positive relationships between news media literacy and current events knowledge, political activity and internal political efficacy. News media education should be deployed widely to mitigate a news media literacy gap that limits democratic citizenship.

Reducing stigmatization associated with alpha-1 antitrypsin deficiency • Michelle Baker, Juniata College • Differences in response to three written narratives designed to reduce stigmatization associated with the genetic condition alpha-1 antitrypsin deficiency (AATD) were examined. Three protagonists were depicted: positive, transitional, and transformational. Positive protagonists, who did not stigmatize a person diagnosed with AATD, showed greater stigmatization reduction than transitional and transformational protagonists. Positive protagonists showed reduced advocacy for individuals to maintain secrecy about their diagnosis or withdraw from others and increased advocacy to educate others about AATD.

Beyond Empathy: The Role of Positive Character Appraisal in Narrative Messages Designed to Reduce Stigmatization • Michelle Baker, Juniata College • The psychological processes guiding the effect that protagonists in narrative health messages have on genetic stigmatization reduction has not been fully explored. This study (N = 170) empirically tests these processes in relation to positive, transitional, and transformational protagonists in messages designed to reduce stigmatization associated with alpha-1 antitrypsin deficiency. Findings reveal that positive character appraisal rather than empathy with the protagonist led to greater self-efficacy, transportation, and decreased desire for social distance.

Let Go of My iPad: Testing the Effectiveness of New Media Technologies to Measure Children’s Food Intake and Health Behaviors • Kim Bissell, University of Alabama; Lindsey Conlin, The University of Southern Mississippi; Bijie Bie; Xueying Zhang; Scott Parrott • This field experiment with just under 100 children at a school in the Southeast examined children’s use of an iPad app as a means of improving the measurement of their food consumption. Secondarily, external factors related to children’s food preferences and food consumption were also examined to determine how the iPad app could be further developed to help them become more aware of the foods they ate and also how they could become more proactive in their health and well-being. Results indicate that the app has enabled children to have more precision in recording the foods they ate, and children, across the board, expressed great appeal for the app. The foods reported in the app were compared to attitudes toward eating and nutritional knowledge; in both cases, more positive attitudes toward eating and stronger nutritional knowledge meant that a child was more likely to report eating healthy foods. Findings from this exploratory study contribute to knowledge in several areas because the findings represent the first of its kind in the discipline. No study, to our knowledge, has examined the usefulness of iPad app in recording children’s food intake, and no study, to our knowledge, has compared the recording of food consumption using traditional measures and the newer measures found on the app. Additionally, we learned a good bit about external factors that could be related to low-income children’s consumption of healthy or unhealthy foods.

Looking for the Truth in the Noise: Epistemic Political Efficacy, Cynicism and Support for Super PACs • Justin Blankenship, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill; Daniel Riffe; Martin Kifer, High Point University • Using a statewide cell and landline telephone survey (N=594) this study examines relationships among political efficacy, epistemic political efficacy (EPE), cynicism and North Carolina voter attitudes toward super PACS that have emerged as key players in political campaigns since the Citizens United decision. While older, higher-income, conservative voters support allowing super PACs to play a role in political campaigning, results also indicate that cynicism and EPE are related to support for super PACs.

Sensation Seeking, Motives, and Media Multitasking Behaviors • Yuhmiin Chang • This study examines the motives behind media multitasking, along with the relationships among sensation seeking, motives, onset timing behaviors, and frequency of media multitasking. An online survey recruited a total of 938 valid respondents across three regions and four universities. The results showed that the motives for media multitasking are different from other types of multitasking. The motives either perfectly or partially mediate the effect of sensation seeking on two types of media multitasking behaviors.

The effects of race cue and emotional content on processing news • Heesook Choi; Sungkyoung Lee, University of Missouri; Frank Michael Russell, University of Missouri School of Journalism • This experimental study with 2 (race cue) x 2 (emotional content) mixed design examined the effects of race and emotional content in news stories on discrete emotions, transportation, intention to share the story, and policy support. The results showed that stories with race cues elicited greater anger compared to those with no cues, and presence of emotional content led to greater anger and fear, and greater intention to share than those with no emotional content.

Underestimated Effect on Self but Overestimated Effect on Other: The Actual and Perceived Effects of Election Poll Coverage on Candidate Evaluations • Sungeun Chung, Sungkyunkwan University; Yu-Jin Heo, Sungkyunkwan University; Jung-Hyun Moon, Sungkyunkwan University • The present study investigated biases in the perceived effect of election polls by comparing it with the actual effect of election polls for those who experienced a bandwagon effect and those who experienced an underdog effect respectively. An online survey with a manipulated poll result (N = 308) showed that voters tended to underestimate the level of change in their evaluation and voters tended to overestimate the level of change in others’ evaluation.

The Effects of News Exposure, Amount of Knowledge, and Perceived Power of Large Corporations on Citizens’ Self-Censorship in SNS • Sangho Byeon, Dankook University; Sungeun Chung, Sungkyunkwan University • The present study investigated whether self-censorship regarding large corporations in SNS is affected by media exposure, the amount of knowledge, and perceived power of large corporations. A nationwide survey was conducted in South Korea (N = 455). As exposure to the news about large corporations increased, self-censorship regarding large corporations increased. The effect of media exposure was mediated by the amount of knowledge about large corporations and perceived power about large corporations.

There Goes the Weekend: Binge-Watching, Fear of Missing Out, Transportation, and Enjoyment of Television Content • Lindsey Conlin, The University of Southern Mississippi; Andrew Billings, University of Alabama • Binge-watching—the act of consuming multiple episodes of a TV show in a single sitting—has become increasingly popular among TV audiences. The current study sought to define and investigate binge-watching in terms of transportation theory and the outcomes associated with entertainment consumption (transportation and enjoyment). Additionally, the personality traits of transportability and fear-of-missing-out (FoMO) were analyzed. Results indicated that personality traits were strong predictors of the pace at which a person would choose to watch a TV show, while transportability and FoMO both predicted that a person would choose to binge-watch existing episodes of a TV show in order to catch up to live episodes. Theoretical and practical implications are discussed.

Romance and Sex on TV: A Content Analysis of Sexual and Romantic Cues on Television • Elise Stevens, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill; Lu Wu, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill; NATALEE SEELY, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill; Francesca Dillman Dillman Carpentier, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill • Content analyses of sexualized content have been done with television shows, movies, and music videos. However, little research has analyzed content in ways that specifically differentiate between sex and romance. Therefore, using a content analysis with popular television programs, we examine sexual and romantic depictions, as well as whether or how sexual risk and responsibility depictions appear alongside other depictions of sex and romance. Twelve programs were analyzed by a total of three coders. The most prevalent sexual or romantic talk dealt with harming/ending a romantic relationships and liking/loving a person romantically. The most prevalent sexual or romantic behavior was light romantic kissing or touching. The dominant category in risk and responsibility was a show of an unwanted pregnancy; mentions of STIs or contraceptives were notably absent. Interesting, most scenes depicting risk and responsibility involved sexual talk or behavior, whereas risk/responsibility was hardly mentioned within the context of romance.

Seeking out & avoiding the news media: Young adults’ strategies for finding current events information • Stephanie Edgerly • This study uses in-depth interview data from 21 young adults to identify their strategies for locating current events information in the high-choice media age. During the interviews, participants responded to six hypothetical vignettes by articulating the steps they would take to find current events information. The data revealed two strategy patterns—one set of strategies that directly involved the news media, and another set that avoided the news media in favor of functional information alternatives.

NGOs, hybrid connective action, and the People’s Climate March • Suzannah Evans; Daniel Riffe; Joe Bob Hester • Studies of civic engagement through social media have often focused on horizontal, leaderless, and spontaneous demonstrations. Formal NGOs, however, have also moved into this space and combined their knowledge of classic collective action with the affordances of digital media to create a hybrid approach to civic engagement. Using Twitter data from the 2014 People’s Climate March, this study examines how successful NGOs were in penetrating the digital public sphere with their chosen messages.

Are You Connected? Evaluating Information Cascades in Online Discussion about the #RaceTogether Campaign • Yang Feng, The University of Virginia’s College at Wise • In the context of online discussion about the recent Starbucks’ Race Together cup campaign, this study aims to explore the central users in the online discussion network on Twitter and the factors contributing to a user’s central status in the network. A social network analysis of 18,000 unique tweets comprising 26,539 edges and 14,343 Twitter users indicated five types of central users: conversation starter, influencer, active engager, network builder, and information bridge. Moreover, path analysis revealed that the number of people a Twitter user follows, the number of followers a user has, and the number of tweets a user generates within a time period helped a user increase his/her in-degree connections in the network, which, together with one’s out-degree connections in the network, propelled a user to become a central figure in the network.

Expanding the RISP Model to Politics: Skepticism, Information Sufficiency, and News Use • Jay Hmielowski, Washington State University; Michael Beam, Kent State University; Myiah Hutchens, Washington State University • This study extends the research on skepticism and information insufficiency in several ways. First, this study tests the assumption that skepticism correlates with needing additional information about an issue. Second, it examines the relationship between insufficiency and news use by looking at the relationships between insufficiency and use of four media variables. Third, it examines whether the relationship between information sufficiency and use of these four outlets varies by political ideology. Lastly, this study puts these variables into a mediated-moderated model to understand whether there is an indirect effect of skepticism through information sufficiency, and whether this indirect effect varies by political ideology. We test these models using survey data from a quota sample collected during the 2014 US midterm elections.

Ambivalence and Information Processing: Potential Ambivalence, Felt Ambivalence, and Information Sufficiency • Jay Hmielowski, Washington State University; Myiah Hutchens, Washington State University; Michael Beam, Kent State University • Using cross-sectional data from the 2014-midterm elections in the US, this paper proposes a serial mediation model looking at the relationship between ambivalence and information processing. Results show that ambivalence is associated with higher levels of systematic processing of information and lower levels of heuristic processing of information. However, the benefits of ambivalence only occur when people feel the psychological discomfort associated with ambivalence (i.e., felt ambivalence) and people perceiving that they do not have enough information to competently participate in the election. In essence, there is a positive relationship between potential ambivalence and systematic processing of information through felt ambivalence and information sufficiency. We found a negative relationship for potential ambivalence on heuristic processing through the same two intervening variables.

The Effect of Partisanship on Changes in Newspaper Consumption: A Longitudinal Study (2008 – 2012) • Toby Hopp; Chris Vargo, University of Alabama • This study used three waves of General Social Survey panel data and a latent change score modeling approach to explore the relationship between partisanship and newspaper consumption across time. The results suggested that prior levels of partisanship were negatively and significantly related to newspaper consumption. Further analyses failed to identify a relationship between changes in partisanship and changes in newspaper consumption.

Narratives and Exemplars: A Comparison of Their Effects in Health Promotions • Zhiyao Ye; Fuyuan Shen; Yan Huang, The Pennsylvania State University • The study aims to compare the effects of narrative and exemplars in health promotions. A between-subjects online experiment (N =253) showed that although narratives were perceived as more convincing than exemplars, both message types had significant effects on issue attitude and behavioral intentions. However, the mechanisms underlying their persuasive effects were distinct. While identification and transportation mediated narrative effects, they did not mediate the influence of the exemplar message.

Diverting media attention at a time of national crisis: Examining the zero-sum issue competition in the emerging media environment • S. Mo Jang, University of South Carolina; Yong Jin Park, Howard University • Although scholars theorized that news topics compete against one another and are subject to the zero-sum dynamics in the traditional media, little research tested this with social media content. Analyzing datasets of Twitter, blogs, and online news, we found that media attention to the government related negatively to attention to another target for blame. This zero-sum principle prevailed in mainstream and social media. Time-series analyses hinted at the intermedia influence from mainstream to social media.

Erasing the scarlet letter: How media messages about sex can lead to better sexual health • Erika Johnson, University of Missouri; Heather Shoenberger, University of Oregon School of Journalism and Communication • This study explores how positive media messages about sex could lead to better sexual health in young adults. Participants were students at a large university (N = 228). The research found that young women have higher stigma, lower sensation seeking, and higher condom embarrassment than young men and media exposure could lessen negative sexual behavior. The conclusion is that positive mediated messages could lead to better sexual health for young women in particular.

Life Satisfaction and Political Participation • Chang Won Jung; Hernando Rojas • This study examines people’s happiness and satisfaction both as an individual assessment of one’s own life and relates them to communication antecedents and political outcomes. Relying on a national representative sample of Colombia (N= 1031), our results suggest life satisfaction and quality of life are positively related to civic participation, but not to protest activities. Furthermore, only quality of life predicts voting and material satisfaction is negatively related to civic engagement.

Sexualizing Pop Music Videos, Self-Objectification, and Selective Exposure: A Moderated Mediation Model • Kathrin Karsay, University of Vienna, Department of Communication; Joerg Matthes, U of Vienna • This article presents an experimental study in which young women were either exposed to pop music videos high in sexualization or to pop music videos low in sexualization. Women’s self-objectification and their subsequent media selection behavior was measured. The results indicate that exposure to sexually objectifying media content increased self-objectification, which in turn increased the preference for sexually objectifying media content. Self-esteem, the internalization of appearance ideals, and BMI did not influence these relationships.

The State of Sustainability Communication Research: Analysis of Published Studies in the Mass Communication Disciplines • Eyun-Jung Ki, The University of Alabama; Sumin Shin, University of Alabama; Jeyoung Oh • This study examined the state of organization sustainability communication research in the mass communication disciplines between 1975 and 2014. Several main findings evolve from this analysis: (1) exponential growth of sustainability studies in recent years (2) contributions of a wide range of scholars and institutions (3) prevalence of environmental issues as a topic of research (4) under-development of definitions, conceptualization, and theoretical foundations (5) the growth of the methodological and statistical rigors.

A Reliable and Valid Measure of Strategic Decision • Eyun-Jung Ki, The University of Alabama; Hanna Park; Jwa Kim, Middle Tennessee State University • The goal of this investigation was to construct a comprehensive instrument for measuring strategic decision. Based on a literature review, eight dimensions—decision quality, decision routines, procedural rationality, understanding, decision commitment, procedural justice, affective conflict, and cognitive conflict—were developed to measure strategic decision by applying the development of multiple-item measurement procedures suggested by Churchill (1979) and Spector (1992) as a guideline and philosophy. Confirmatory factor analysis (CFA) validated the constructed measures.

Predicting Time Spent With News Via Legacy and Digital Media • Esther Thorson, Missouri School of Journalism; Eunjin (Anna) Kim, University of Missouri; Roger Fidler, University of Missouri • A model of is proposed to help explain how much time people will spend with legacy and digital media for news, and mobile media for non-news use. The model is tested with a national U.S. telephone sample of more than 1000 adults. News Affinity predicts news use across the media. Incumbent Media Habit Strength, instead of influencing digital media negatively, increases it. The more digital devices people own, the more they use smartphones and tablets for news, but not Web news. A new variable, Professional Journalist Importance is correlated with news use, but when demographics are controlled, its effect disappears.

The Impact of Political Identity Salience on the Third-Person Perception and Political Participation Intention • Hyunjung Kim, Sungkyunkwan University • This study investigates the influence of political identity salience on the third-person perception of polling reports and political participation intention. Results of two studies demonstrate that partisans in the political identity salience condition show greater third-person perception differentials between the in- and out-groups than those in the control group. Findings also show that political identity salience is indirectly linked to voting intention through the third-person perception particularly for the supporters of a losing candidate.

Factors and Consequences of Perceived Impacts of Polling News • Hyunjung Kim, Sungkyunkwan University • This study investigates how third-person perception of polling news is linked to behavioral intention change directly and indirectly through emotions by employing a survey experiment. Findings demonstrate that the third-person perception of polling news is associated with behavioral intention in two opposite directions depending on participants’ predisposition, and the association may be partially mediated by pride particularly for those who support the majority opinion. Implications of the findings are discussed.

Investigating Individuals’ Perceptions of Anti-Binge Drinking Message Effects on Self versus on Others: The Theoretical Implications for the Third-Person Perceptions • Nam Young Kim, Sam Houston State University (SHSU); Masudul Biswas, Loyola University Maryland; Kiwon Seo, SHSU • What makes people undervalue the impact of health campaign messages that promote positive behavioral changes? In the context of anti-binge drinking Public Service Announcement (PSAs), this study explores what happens if people’s prior alcohol consumption control beliefs and message attributes interactively cause dissonance, which make them feel uncomfortable and cognitively disagree with the PSAs. A 2 (Fear Appeal: High vs. Low) X 2 (Controlled-Drinking Belief: High vs. Low) experiment revealed that participants who experienced dissonance tended to estimate a greater PSA effect on others than on themselves (i.e., third-person effects) because of psychological defensiveness. The findings have partial and theoretical implications for future studies on third-person perceptions and persuasion.

Beauty or Business Queen– How Young Women Select Media to Reinforce Possible Future Selves • Silvia Knobloch-Westerwick, The Ohio State University; Melissa Kaminski, Ohio State University; Laura E. Willis; Kate T. Luong, The Ohio State University • Young women (N = 181, 18-25 years) completed a baseline session, four sessions with selective magazine browsing (beauty, parenting, business, and current affairs magazines), and three days later a follow-up online. Their possible future selves as romantic partner, parent, and professional at baseline affected the extent to which beauty, parenting, and business pages were viewed. In turn, possible future selves as romantic partner and professional were reinforced through selective exposure to beauty and business magazines.

Memory Mobilization and Communication Effects on Collective Memory About Tiananmen in Hong Kong • Francis L. F. Lee, Chinese University of Hong Kong; Joseph Chan • People in a society share collective memories about numerous historical events simultaneously, but not every historical event is equally salient in the minds of individuals, and social processes may influence the salience of specific historical events over time. This study examines the implications of memory mobilization, defined as the organized efforts to bring the collective memory about the past or specific past events to the fore for the purposes of social mobilization, on recall of historical events. Memory mobilization is treated as a process involving communication activities via a wide range of platforms, creating an atmosphere of remembering for the historical event. Focusing on the case of Hong Kong people’s memory of the 1989 Tiananmen incident in Beijing, this study finds that more people indeed recall Tiananmen as an important historical event during the period of memory mobilization. Recall of Tiananmen is related to age cohorts and political attitudes. But during memory mobilization, communication activities, especially those involving interpersonal interactions, also significantly lead to recall of the event.

Predicting Tablet Use: A Study of Gratifications-sought, Leisure Boredom and Multitasking • Louis Leung, The Chinese University of Hong Kong; Renwen Zhang, The Chinese University of Hong Kong • Using a probability sample of 348 tablet users, this study found that relaxation, information seeking, fashion/status, and work management were instrumental reasons for tablet use, while social connection anytime/anywhere, large screen, and ease-of-use were intrinsic motives. Contrary to what was hypothesized, leisure boredom was not significantly linked to tablet use. Relaxation was the strongest motivation to predict multitasking with the tablet; however, people tend not to engage in cognitively unproductive multitasking.

What’s in a Name? A Reexamination of Personalized Communication Effects • Cong Li, Univ. of Miami; Jiangmeng Liu, Univ. of Miami • Personalized information has become ubiquitous on the Internet. However, the conclusion on whether such information is more effective than standardized information looks somewhat confusing in the literature. Some prior studies showed that a personalized message could generate more favorable outcomes than a standardized one, but others did not (sometimes with an almost identical study design). To provide a possible explanation why there existed such conflicting findings and conclusions in the personalized communication literature, the current study tested the moderating effect of involvement on personalization in an advertising context. Through a 2 × 2 × 2 between-subjects experiment, it was found that the superiority of a personalized message over a standardized message was much more salient when the message recipient was highly involved with the focal subject of the message than lowly involved.

The Link Between Affect and Behavioral Intention: How Emotions Elicited by Social Marketing Messages of Anti-drunk Driving on Social media Influence Cognition and Conation • Chen Lou, Michigan State University; Saleem Alhabash, Michigan State University • This study used a 3 (emotional tone: positive vs. negative vs. coactive) x 3 (message repetition) within-subject experimental design to investigate how affect elicited from persuasive messages may influence cognitive processing and behavioral intention. This study explicated the mechanism underneath the affect-attitude-behavioral intention relationship, and identified the process of how and in what circumstance emotional responses to persuasive messages could affect behavioral intentions via its effect on people’s attitude. Specifically, this study showed that people’s emotional responses elicited by negative emotional anti-drunk driving social marketing messages was effective in persuading them to refrain from driving while tipsy or drunk via affecting their attitude toward drunk driving.

The information exchangers: Social media motivations and news • Timothy Macafee • Individuals visit social media for a variety of reasons, and one motivation involves information exchange. The current study explores the relationship between individuals’ demographics, their information exchange motivations on social media and the extent to which they attend to different news media. Using a United States representative survey sample, the results suggest a strong, positive relationship between information exchange motivations and attention to news.

Media and Policy Agenda Building in Investigative Reporting • Gerry Lanosga, Indiana University Media School; Jason Martin, DePaul University • This examination of American investigative journalism from 1979 to 2012 analyzes a random sample (N=757) of 22,163 questionnaires completed by journalists for annual investigative reporting contest entries. This novel data source uncovers aspects of journalistic process rather than static product, resulting in methodological and empirical advances that better explain journalist/source relationships, policy outcomes, and agenda-building interdependence. A model for predicting policy agenda-building results based on attributes of investigative reporting is proposed and tested.

News framing and moral panics: Blaming media for school shootings • Michael McCluskey, University of Tennessee-Chattanooga; Hayden Seay • School shootings have triggered moral panics responses that blame popular media for real-world violence. Analysis of news coverage following 11 school shootings identified five frames, of which four reflect a moral panics perspective identifying popular media as a threat to society. Frames of media affect society, media help us understand the shooter, media are full of odd material and media behaved irresponsibly fit a moral panics approach, while media behaved responsibly provided an alternative perspective.

Closing of the Journalism Mind: Anti-Intellectualism in the Professional Development of College Students • Michael McDevitt; Jesse Benn • This paper represents the first attempt to measure anti-intellectualism in journalistic attitudes, and the first to document developmental influences on student anti-intellectualism. We propose reflexivity as a conceptual foundation to anticipate how students evaluate intellect and intellectuals in relation to an imagined public. While transparency in public reflexivity appears to sanction anti-intellectualism, craft reflexivity offers a resistant orientation conducive to critical thinking.

Identifying with a Stereotype: The Divergent Effects of Exposure to Homosexual Television Characters • Bryan McLaughlin, Texas Tech University; Nathian Rodriguez, Texas Tech University • Scholars examining homosexual television characters have typically come to one of two conclusions, either exposure to homosexual characters leads to increased acceptance, or homosexual characters serve to reaffirm negative stereotypes. We resolve these differences by introducing the concept of stereotyped identification – the idea that cognitively identifying with fictional characters can increase acceptance of minorities, while reinforcing stereotypes about how they look, act, and talk. Results from our national survey provide support for this hypothesis.

Processing Entertainment vs. Hard News: Cognitive and Emotional Responses to Different News Formats • Sara Magee, Loyola University-Maryland; Jensen Moore, Manship School of Mass Communication, LSU • How millennials process news is crucial to determining the growth of future news audiences. This 2 (message content: entertainment news/hard news) X 12 (message replication) experimental study found millennials not only encode and store entertainment news better, it is also more arousing, credible, and positive than hard news. Results are interpreted using Lang’s Limited Capacity Model of Mediated Motivated Message Processing. Our results suggest new ways of thinking about the Hardwired for News Hypothesis.

Effects of Embedding Social Causes in Programming • Pamela Nevar, Central Washington University; Jacqueline Hitchon, University of Illinois-Urbana Champaign • Cause placement is a recent extension of the advertising strategy, product placement. This research examined the roles of cause involvement and message sidedness on the persuasiveness of cause placement in primetime entertainment programming. Two experiments found that high cause involvement (vs. low) tended to produce more favorable attitudinal responses and behavioral intentions. When cause involvement was high, one-sided messages triumphed over multi-sided messages; when cause involvement was low, multi-sided messages tended to be more persuasive.

The They in Cyberbullying: Examining Empathy and Third Person Effects in Cyberbullying of Young Adults • Cynthia Nichols, Oklahoma State University; Bobbi Kay Lewis, Oklahoma State University • The 21st century has seen rapid technological advances. Although these advances bring a multitude of benefits, there are also drawbacks from the technology that has become an integral part of daily life—such as cyberbullying. Although online bullying has becoming as common as in-person bullying, cyberbullying is not understood nearly as much as its counterpart. Due to its characteristics, it can be hard to recognize, prevent, or stop online bullying. Certain characteristics have emerged in cyberbullying research as indicators of bullies—lack of empathy toward cyberbullying, lack of parental mediation, high social media use, and third person effects toward the impact of media. The following paper looks to explore the relationships between these variables. Data (N=436) indicated that young adults believe other people are more susceptible to bullying than themselves, empathy influences attitudes toward cyberbullying, and athletes are more empathetic toward others being cyberbullied.

Commercialization of Medicine: An Analysis of Cosmetic Surgeons’ Websites • Sung-Yeon Park, School of Media and Communication, Bowling Green State University; SangHee Park, Bowling Green State University • This study examined the homepages of 250 cosmetic surgeons’ websites. Common elements on the webpages were pre-identified as indicators of medicalization or commercialization and their presence and salience were examined by focusing on the service provider, service recipients, and the practice. Overall, the providers were highly medicalized and moderately commercialized. The recipients were moderately medicalized and commercialized. The practice was moderately medicalized and highly commercialized. Implications for doctors, regulators, and consumer advocates were discussed.

Women with disability: Sex object and Supercrip stereotyping on reality television’s Push Girls • Krystan Lenhard; Donnalyn Pompper, Temple University • We respond to critical neglect of disability representation across mass media by evaluating characterizations of women who use wheelchairs on the U.S.-based reality show, Push Girls. Content analysis and a hermeneutic phenomenological theme analysis revealed findings which suggest that Sex object and Supercrip stereotypes enable producers to create programming for audiences otherwise repelled by images of women using wheelchairs. Implications of stereotype use for audiences and the disabilities community are offered.

Disclosure or Deception?: Social Media Literacy, Use, and Identification of Native Advertising • Lance Porter; Kasey Windels, Louisiana State University; Jun Heo, Louisiana State University; Rui Wang, Louisiana State University; YONGICK JEONG, Louisiana State University; A-Reum Jung • The rise of native advertising presents a number of ethical issues for today’s audiences. Do social media audiences recognize native advertising as paid messaging? Does media literacy make a difference in this ability to distinguish editorial and user generated from paid advertisements? An eye-tracking experiment found that while most can identify native advertising, certain types of native advertising are more difficult than others to identify and that Facebook is not fully disclosing paid content.

Impact of Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood and active mediation on preschoolers’ social and emotional development • Eric Rasmussen, Texas Tech University; Autumn Shafer, Texas Tech University; Malinda Colwell, Texas Tech University; Narissra Punyanunt-Carter, Texas Tech University; Shawna White, Texas Tech University; Rebecca Densley, Texas Tech University; Holly Wright, Texas Tech University • 127 children ages 2-6 either watched or did not watch 10 episodes of Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood over a two-week period. Those in the viewing condition exhibited higher levels of empathy, self-efficacy, and emotion recognition, under certain conditions. Without exception, children benefitted from watching the show only when their viewing experiences were frequently accompanied by active mediation. Preschoolers’ age, income, and home media environment also influenced children’s reactions to exposure to the show.

Probing the role of exemplars in third-person perceptions: Further evidence of a novel hypothesis • Mike Schmierbach, Pennsylvania State University; Michael Boyle • Despite strong evidence of its existence, the third-person perception remains incompletely understood. This paper expands previous research that added an important variable to models explaining perceived influence: availability of exemplars. Employing a 2 x 2 experiment and a diverse U.S. sample (N = 523), the study confirms that this variable is a robust predictor regardless of thought-listing procedures or primes shown to reduce the heuristic reliance on media examples.

Portable Social Networks: Interactive Mobile Facebook Use Explaining Perceived Social Support and Loneliness Using Crawled and Self-Reported Data • mihye seo; Jinhee Kim, Pohang University of Science and Technology; Hyeseung Yang • The present study examines if Facebooking using mobile devices could generate gratifying social relationships and contribute psychological well-being. Matching crawling data with self-reported data from mobile Facebook users, this study found that more social interactions mobile Facebook users had with their friends and faster friends’ reactions to users’ postings increased mobile Facebook users’ perceived social support and ultimately alleviate their loneliness. Implications of living in always on and connected mobile society are discussed.

Keeping up with the audiences: Journalistic role expectations in Singapore • Edson Tandoc, Nanyang Technological University; Andrew Duffy, Nanyang Technological University • Scholarly work on journalistic role conceptions is growing, but the assumption that what journalists conceive of as their roles depend in part on what they believe audiences expect from them remains underexplored. Through a nationally representative survey (N=1,200), this study sought to understand journalistic role expectations in Singapore. The study found that Singaporeans, in general, expect their journalists to serve the public, the nation, and the government—and in that order.

What did you expect? What roles audiences expect from their journalists in Singapore • Edson Tandoc, Nanyang Technological University; Zse Yin How • This study seeks to understand the role expectations Singaporeans have for their journalists. Ten categories of role expectations emerged from the analysis of open-ended responses from a nationally representative survey of Singaporeans (N= 1,200). Some role expectations, such as the disseminator and interpreter, were conceptually similar to earlier typologies of journalists’ own role conceptions. But two new roles emerged: protector of the people, and being a good citizen. The role of cultural context is discussed.

And they lived happily ever after: Associations between watching Disney movies and Romantic beliefs of children • Merel van Ommen; Madelon Willems; Nikki Duijkers; Serena Daalmans, Radboud University; Rebecca de leeuw • Disney movies are popular among children and depict a world that is very romantic. The question is what role popular Disney movies play, as a cultivating resource. This survey study (N=315) aimed to explore if Disney’s depictions of romance are related to children’s romantic beliefs, as assessed by the Romantic Beliefs Scale. Findings fromregression analyses are the first to show that the more children watched Disney movies the stronger they endorsed the ideology of romanticism.

Issue publics, need for orientation, and obtrusiveness: A model on contingent conditions in agenda-setting • Ramona Vonbun, University of Vienna; Katharina Kleinen-von Königslöw, University of Zurich; Hajo Boomgaarden, University of Vienna • This study investigates the role of contingent conditions in the agenda-setting process introducing issue public membership as a mediating factor in opinion formation. The model is tested on five issues, based on a content analysis of 28 media outlets and a panel study in the context of a national election. The findings hint to a stable public agenda, NFO as an important antecedent in the agenda-setting process, and a mediating role of issue public membership.

Turned off by Media Violence: The Effect of Sanitized Violence Portrayals on Selective Exposure to Violent Media • T. Franklin Waddell, Penn State University; Erica Bailey; James D. Ivory, Virginia Tech University; Morgan Tear; Kevin Lee; Winston Wu; Sarah Franis; Bradi Heaberlin • The current study examined whether prior exposure to non-sanitized media violence affects viewers’ subsequent preference for violent media. Exposure to traditional, sanitized media violence increased the likelihood of selecting a clip that featured the prevention of violence and decreased the likelihood of selecting a clip that featured retributive violence. Our study thus offers the novel finding that exposure to some forms of media violence can actually inhibit, rather than foster, additional exposure to violent media.

Minnie Mouse, Modern Women: Anthropomorphism and Gender in Children’s Animated Television • Stephen Warren, Syracuse University; YUXI ZHOU, YUXI ZHOU; Dan Brown; Casby Bias, Syracuse University • This study examines the extent to which anthropomorphism influences gender representation of characters in children’s television programs. Results revealed that anthropomorphic characters were presented more physically gender-neutral than humans, and observed female characters were underrepresented. No significant differences were found between anthropomorphic and human characters in terms of personalities and behavior. The researchers propose that because physical appearance is more ambiguous, anthropomorphic characters’ personalities and behaviors may be overcompensated to make their gender clearer.

Social Media, Social Integration and Subjective Well-being among Urban Migrants in China • Lu Wei; Fangfang Gao, Zhejiang Univesity • As Chinese urban migrants are increasingly dependent on new media, particularly social media for news, entertainment, and social interaction, it is important to know how social media use contributes to their social integration and subjective well-being. Based on an online survey, this study revealed that social media use can indeed contribute to urban migrants’ social integration, particularly their perceived social identity and weak social ties, but helps little with strong social support and real-world social participation. While social media use can indeed influence urban migrants’ subjective well-being, different types of use may have different effects. Finally, urban migrants’ social integration, particularly their level of social identity, is significantly associated with their subjective well-being.

Blogging the brand: Meaning transfer and the case of Weight Watchers • Erin Willis, University of Memphis; Ye Wang, University of Missouri – Kansas City • Brand communities are becoming increasingly more popular online. The current study examined the Weight Watchers online brand community to understand the role consumer engagement plays in shaping brand meaning and how brand meaning is transferred through consumer-generated content. Social and cultural meanings are discussed. Practical implications for online brand strategy are included and also how to engage consumers with content delivered through brand communities.

Exemplification in Online Slideshows: The Role of Visual Attention on Availability Effects • Bartosz Wojdynski, University of Georgia; Camila Espina, University of Georgia; Temple Northup, University of Houston; Hyejin Bang, University of Georgia; YEN-I LEE, University of Georgia; Nandita Sridhar, University of Georgia • Although research has shown that human examples in news stories wield a high level of influence on the way users perceive story content, the role of attention in these effects has not been tested. Furthermore, it is not clear if exemplification effects identified in traditional linear story forms extend to newer news formats that are more list-based. An eye-tracking experiment (N=87) examined the effects of content type (human exemplar/ no exemplar) and exemplar distribution (early / late / evenly distributed) in online health news slideshow stories on visual attention, exemplar availability, issue perceptions, and behavioral intent. Results showed that the presence of exemplars early in a slideshow significantly increased visual attention throughout the slideshow. Furthermore, availability of slide topic was highly significantly correlated with perceived persuasiveness of slide topic. Implications of the findings for the extension of exemplification theory and the production of list-based informational content are discussed.

Credibility Judgments of Health Social Q&A: Effects of Reputation, External Source, and Social Rating • Qian Xu, Elon university • Social Q&A websites have gained increasing popularity for health information seeking and sharing. This study employs a 2×2×2 between-participants experiment to explore the effects of three interface cues in health social Q&A – reputation, external source, and social rating – on credibility judgments of the answerer and the answer. The study discovered that different cues contributed to different dimensions of perceived answerer credibility. The three cues also complemented each other in influencing perceived answer credibility.

A Multilevel Analysis of Individual- and Community-Level Sources of Local Newspaper Credibility in the United States • Masahiro Yamamoto, University of Wisconsin-La crosse; Seungahn Nah • Existing research has identified salient individual- and community-level factors that systematically account for variations in audience credibility of news media, including an audience’s political orientation, media use, social and political trust, community structural pluralism, and political heterogeneity. The purpose of this study is to test whether audiences’ perceptions of local newspaper credibility are explained by these theoretical variables, using a multilevel framework. Data from a community survey in the United States show that structural pluralism is negatively related to local newspaper credibility. Data also reveal that conservative ideology, social trust, and political trust significantly predict local newspaper credibility. Implications are discussed for the production of news content.

The Need for Surveillance: A Scale to Assess Individual Differences in Attention to the Information Environment • Chance York, Kent State University • Individuals vary with regard to their need to psychologically attend to the information environment, including the information provided by immediate surroundings, interpersonal relationships, and news media. After I outline theoretical explanations—both biological and cultural—for individual differences in environmental attention, I develop a unidimensional scale called Need for Surveillance (NSF) to measure this construct. I show that NSF predicts news use and adhering to the correct news agenda. Implications for media effects are discussed.

Student Competition
Social Pressure for Social Good? Motivations for Completing the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge • Jared Brickman, Washington State University •
The incredibly successful ALS Ice Bucket Challenge dominated social media in summer 2014. This study, guided by the ideas of diffusion, peer pressure, and concertive control systems, explores the motivations for participating in the challenge using interviews and a survey of more than 300 undergraduates. Logistic regression revealed that peer pressure, charitable intent, and a lack of perceptions of negativity surrounding the event were all significant predictors of participation.

A New Look at Agenda-Setting Effects: Exploring the Second- and Third-level Agenda Setting in Contemporary China • Yang Cheng, University of Missouri • Through two separate studies in a Chinese context, this research tests and compares the second- and third-level agenda setting effects, examines the differences between the explicit and implicit public agendas. A total of 1,667 news media coverage and 680 effective public surveys are collected and analyzed. Evidence from both studies shows strong attribute agenda setting effects at the second- and third-level, no matter the focus of issue is obtrusive or unobtrusive. Results also demonstrates that the media agenda is positively associated at a higher level with the implicit public agenda than the explicit one.

The silencing of the watchdogs: newspaper decline in state politics • Juanita Clogston • This paper analyzes the pattern in newspaper closures in state capitals to help assess the impact on democracy from the declining watchdog role of the media over state politics. Findings reveal papers in state capitals are at 1.7 times greater risk of failure than papers not in state capitals from 1955 to 2010. Based on analysis of 46 failed papers, risk factors included PM circulation and being one of two papers in the capital.

Sourcing health care reform: Exploring network partisanship in coverage of Obamacare • Bethany Conway, University of Arizona; Jennifer Ervin • Social network analysis was used to examine source use in coverage of the health care reform by CNN, Fox News, and MSNBC. While 72% of sources were unique to a particular news organization, findings indicate that in the three months prior to the bill’s passage similarities existed across networks. Further, MSNBC was much more varied in their source use. Correlations amongst sources and networks change in magnitude and significance over time.

Above the Scroll: Visual Hierarchy in Online News • Holly Cowart, University of Florida • This study considered the usefulness of hierarchical presentation of news content. It compared the news content presented as the top story on five major news website homepages three times a day for one month. Results indicate some level of agreement on what to present as the top story as well the use of conventional visual cues to identify those stories.

Outpouring of success: How the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge engaged Millennials’ narcissism toward digital activism • Andrea Hall, University of Florida; Lauren Furey, University of Florida • Jumping off the popularity of the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge, a survey of 500 Milliennials explores how social media use could lead to narcissistically induced activism. Results revealed a strong correlation between social media use and narcissism, and motives for participating were supported by social comparison theory. Results also revealed that participating in the ALS campaign was perceived as activism, which suggests it behaved as a bridge between traditional and digital activism.

Visual gender stereotyping and political image perception • Tatsiana Karaliova, Missouri School of Journalism; Valerie Guglielmi; Sangeeta Shastry; Jennifer Travers; Nathan Hurst • This online experiment aimed to explore the impact of visual stereotypical and non-stereotypical representations of political candidates on young voters’ political image perception and voting intention. It confirmed the existence of predispositions about male and female political candidates in the evaluation of their practical and emotional traits. Gender had a significant effect on how the candidates were evaluated for practical traits and type of representation had a significant effect on how they were evaluated for emotional traits.

Selfies: True self or Better Self?: A qualitative exploration of selfie uses on social media • Joon Kyoung Kim, Syracuse University • Despite of increased popularity of selfies on social media, little is known about media users’ uses of selfies. Understanding social media users’ uses of selfies in terms of self-presentation is fundamental because use of individuals’ own pictures on social media can be an important mode of self-expression. Use of selfies on social media can be useful for examining individuals’ self-presentation because an individual’s picture on his or her profile is most frequently exposed to other users on social media, it can be used to examine how individual users express themselves. The purpose of this research is to explore how social media users use selfies and perceive them. In-depth interviews were conducted to collect data from social media users in a university in the Northeastern United States. A snowball sampling strategy was used to recruit eleven participants because this study aimed to research certain users who post or share their selfies on social media. In addition, because most social media users who frequently use selfies belong to younger generation such as teenagers, this study focused on young college students who aged 19 to 22 from different majors. Four themes emerged from analysis of in-depth interview data. Selective exposure, frequency, extraversion/introversion, and feedback management emerged under the major theme of impression management. These themes explain how social media users use their selfies to give favorable impression to others and to avoid conveying unfavorable impression to others.

Cultivating gender stereotypes: Pinterest and the user-generated housewife? • Nicole Lee, Texas Tech University; Shawna White, Texas Tech University • Through a survey of 315 women, this study explored the relationship between Pinterest use, gender stereotypes and self-perceptions. Results indicate a link between Pinterest use and stereotyped views of gender roles in a relational context. The same link was not found between Pinterest use and self-esteem or body image. Open-ended questions explored cognitive and emotional effects of Pinterest use. A mix of motivation, inspiration, guilt and jealousy were reported. Directions for further research are discussed.

HPV Vaccination in US Media: Gender and regional differences • Wan Chi Leung, University of South Carolina • This study examines newspaper articles and television news transcripts about the HPV vaccine in the U.S. from 2006 to 2014. Findings reveals that media presented HPV vaccine as more beneficial to women’s health instead of men. In the South of the U.S. where the vaccination rate was the lowest among all regions, newspapers tended to talk less about HPV vaccination, and presented less benefits of vaccination, and fewer positive direct quotes.

Putnam’s Clarion Call: An Examination of Civic Engagement and the Internet • Lindsay McCluskey, Louisiana State University; Young Kim, Louisiana State University • The purpose of this research is to develop and test models of civic engagement. We examined various dimensions of civic engagement for antecedents and determinant factors related to the Internet, controlling for effects of a wide range of other variables. Using 2010 national survey data, this study found that significant and different factors (e.g., trust, satisfaction, the location of Internet use, and perceived Internet impact) for dimensions of civic engagement in full multivariate logit models.

The Audience Brand: The Clash Between Public Dialogue and Brand Preservation in News Comment Sections • Meredith Metzler • The tensions between news organizations operating in the public interest and as a business operation have not changed online, and, in fact have become more complicated. In this paper, I examine how comment sections architecture is modified to encourage a particular type of dialogue from the now visible audience. The findings in this paper indicate that the news organizations shape conversational environments occurring within the boundaries of its site.

Let’s Keep This Quiet: Media Framing of Campus Sexual Assault, Its Causes, and Proposed Solutions • Jane O’Boyle, University of South Carolina; Jo-Yun Queenie Li • This study analyzes ten American newspapers across the country (N = 500) to examine how they present stories about sexual assault on college campuses. We explore attributions for causes and which entities are framed most responsible for creating solutions to the problem: individuals, universities, fraternities, sports teams, or society. Findings indicate media attribute causes to individuals such as victims and perpetrators, but solutions to universities. Liberal newspapers framed the victim as most responsible for causes, and were overall favorable toward universities.

The Discourse of Sacrifice in Natural Disaster: The Case Study of Thailand’s 2011 Floods • Penchan Phoborisut, University of Utah • This paper investigates how the discourse of a natural disaster such as a flood is formed and featured in the Thai media. The paper adopts a textual analysis of news about the floods in 2011, reported in two major Thai mainstream newspapers during the three- month long floods. The emerging theme is sacrifice and repeated coverage on being good citizens. Meanwhile, the issues of environment and social justice were absent. I argue that the articulation of sacrifice can perpetuate social injustice imposed on the vulnerable population.

#JeSuisCharlie: Examining the Power of Hashtags to Frame Civic Discourse in the Twitterverse • Miles Sari, Washington State University; Chan Chen, Washington State University • Using the Charlie Hebdo shooting as a case study for exploratory analysis, this paper bridges the link between framing theory and the power of hashtags to frame civic discourse in the Twitterverse. Through an inductive qualitative content analysis and a critical discourse analysis, we argue that the hashtag Je Suis Charlie constructed a dichotomy of opposition that symbolically placed the massacre in the context of a rhetorical war between free expression and global terrorism.

The Third-Person Perception and Priming: The Case of Ideal Female Body Image • Jiyoun Suk • This paper explores how priming affects the third-person perception in the case of ideal female body image. Through a posttest-only control group experiment, this study reveals that after reading an article about media’s effect on shaping women’s view about their body, the third-person perception was weakened among women. This is because the perceived media effect on self has increased after the priming. It implies how the third-person effect can be easily manipulated through priming.

Is Social Viewing the New Laugh Track? Examining the Effect of Traditional and Digital Forms of Audience Response on Comedy Enjoyment • T. Franklin Waddell, Penn State University • Participants watched a comedy program that randomly varied the presence of social media comments (positive vs. negative vs. no comment control) and the sound of a laugh track (present vs. absent) during programming. Results find that negative social media comments lead to lower levels of program enjoyment through the mediating pathways of lower bandwagon perceptions and lower humor. Surprisingly, canned laughter also had an inhibitory effect on enjoyment via the mechanism of lower narrative involvement.

Heaven, Hell, and Physical Viral Media: An Analysis of the Work of Jack T. Chick • Philip Williams, Regent University • This paper advances the concept of physical viral media: that virality is not limited to digital media, and that examples of media virality predate the digital era. The work under analysis is that of Jack T. Chick, the controversial tract publisher. The paper uses media characteristics and behavior analysis to establish the viral nature of Chick’s work and demonstrate the possibility of virality with the physical form.

The Effects of Media Consumption and Interpersonal Contacts on stereotypes towards Hong Kong people in China • Chuanli XIA, City University of Hong Kong • This study examines the effects of both media consumption and interpersonal contacts on Chinese mainlanders’ stereotypes towards Hong Kong people. The framework was tested with a survey data of 314 mainlanders. Results reveal that media consumption is negatively associated with mainlanders’ positive stereotypes about Hong Kong people, while interpersonal contacts with Hong Kong people result in positive stereotypes about Hong Kong people. Theoretical and practical implications are discussed.

2015 Abstracts

Magazine 2015 Abstracts

The Uses and Gratifications Theory and the Future of Print Magazines • Elizabeth Bonner, University of Alabama • In the midst of the persistent discussion that print journalism is dying, data suggests many magazines are still thriving, particularly with Millennial audiences. The uses and gratifications theory emerges as a pivotal tool for magazines hoping to make it through this time of technological transformation. If print magazines wish to survive, they must make efforts to understand how this instrumental Millennial demographic uses magazines and what gratifications its members seek in those uses.

Finding the Future of Magazines in the Past: Audience Engagement with the First 18th-Century Magazines • Elizabeth Bonner, University of Alabama • In the midst of the discussion that print journalism lacks value today because it cannot provide the interactive platform modern audiences desire, data suggests many magazines are thriving. Assessing this print versus digital debate in the context of historical magazines reveals readers’ desire for interactivity is actually age old. This study examines the audience engagement efforts of America’s first two magazines founded in 1741 and seeks to shed light on the future of print magazines.

Survivors and Dreamers: A Rhetorical Vision of Teen Voices magazine • Ellen Gerl, Ohio University • This study explores how Teen Voices, a magazine written and edited by teenage girls, created a rhetorical vision of empowerment through its text and photographs. Using social convergence theory and fantasy theme analysis, the researcher identified four fantasy types: 1) I am a survivor, 2) I am a dreamer, 3) I am an activist, and 4) I can do anything. Findings discussed within the framework of third wave feminism show the rhetorical community established within Teen Voices magazine valued individualism and personal strength.

App Assets: An Exploratory Analysis of Magazine Brands’ Digital Drive for Audience Attention • Elizabeth Hendrickson, Ohio University; Yun Li • This research examines the evolution of today’s consumer magazine content distribution and considers how a media organization’s digital developments might reflect a further tapering of consumer demographics. This study applies the diffusion of innovation framework to magazine media convergence trends and explores how the industry’s leading publishing organizations respond to the changing needs and expectations of its already-niche audiences.

The Ethics of Common Sense: Considering the Ethics Decision-Making Processes of Freelance Magazine Journalists • Joy Jenkins, University of Missouri • Freelance journalists face many of the same ethical dilemmas as journalists working in newsrooms. Because they work independently for various organizations, they may develop different strategies for making ethical decisions. This study used in-depth interviews with freelance magazine journalists (N = 14) to explore how they define ethical dilemmas and the individual and organizational frameworks guiding their decision-making. The study sheds light on the forces shaping ethical decision-making, particularly in the context of magazine journalism.

Picturing Cities: A Semiotic Analysis of City and Regional Magazine Cover Images • Joy Jenkins, University of Missouri; Keith Greenwood • City and regional magazines serve multiple functions in communities, providing ideas for how residents should spend their time and money and offering insight into the people and experiences that define urban life. The covers of these publications both promote this content and reveal the images of cities these magazines perpetuate. This study used content analysis to examine the covers of nine award-winning city and regional magazines. The study aimed to assess the philosophy of selection the magazines used when choosing cover content, particularly whether covers were created to accurately reflect the community and the challenges and opportunities it faces or to enhance sales through promoting a limited vision of urban life. The analysis indicated that city magazines focused on items to be consumed over depictions of people, but when people did appear, they reflected a narrow demographic slice of city’s populations. The magazines also emphasized lifestyle topics and more often represented generic backdrops than specific locations. Lastly, the covers relied on photographic approaches through which readers could establish social connections with the subjects presented. These findings suggest that city magazines emphasize depictions of affluent urban lifestyles over representing more diverse images of city life.

Looking Westwards: Men in Transnational Men’s Magazine Advertising in India • Suman Mishra • This study examines advertising content of four top-selling Indian editions of transnational men’s lifestyle magazines (Men’s Health India, GQ India, FHM India, Maxim India) to understand how it is constructing masculinity for urban Indian men. Through content analysis, the study finds greater presence of international brands and Caucasian models than domestic Indian brands and models in the advertisements. Male models often appear alone and in decorative roles as opposed to professional roles promoting clothing and accessories. Advertisements with sexual explicitness and physical contact are few, which is in line with global trends and local conservative Indian culture. The study discusses the emergence of class-based masculinity that helps to assimilate the upper class Indian men into global consumer base through shared ideals, goals and values.

A Boondoggle in Space: Themes in 1960s Era Space Exploration Journalism • Jennifer Scott, Regent University; Stephen Perry • The success of Sputnik I in 1957 both propelled Russia to the forefront of the Space Race and challenged the United States to invest more time, resources, manpower, and finances into space exploration. By the 1960s, skepticism grew concerning the United States’ objectives and ability to enter space and eventually reach the moon. This study examines articles published in The Saturday Evening Post that editorialize on the U.S. space program. A fantasy theme analysis shows exaggerated and negative language used to inflate the severity of the Space Race and criticize the United States’ failures and disorganization. Themes emerge in the articles that construct a rhetorical vision of the United States far behind Russia in the highly dangerous, overly expensive, and severely wasteful arena of space travel.

Sexuality and Relationships in Cosmopolitan for Latinas Online and Cosmopolitan Online • Chelsea Reynolds, University of Minnesota SJMC • Since 2012, leading publishers have launched magazines targeting Latina readers. This study positions those titles within the larger Latino marketing boom and problematizes their representations of Latina women. This qualitative framing analysis contrasts frames of sexuality and relationships in Sex & Love articles published on Cosmo For Latinas online with those from Cosmopolitan online. While CFL stereotyped Latinas’ bodies as caught up in political and family struggles, Cosmo focused on readers’ sexual and romantic autonomy.

2015 Abstracts

Law and Policy 2015 Abstracts

Open Competition
The Right to be Forgotten and Global Googling: A More Private Exchange of Information? • Burton Bridges •
The lack of privacy regulation remains a concern in the United States and abroad. With the European Union’s introduction of the Right to be Forgotten, people are requesting to hide data and search engines are being forced to comply. This paper will explore how the unregulated flow of information is being balanced with the innate desire for individual discretion. Additionally, the implications of the EU’s law will be contrasted and theoretically applied to the U.S.

Difficulties and Dilemmas Regarding Defamatory Meaning in Ethnic Micro-Communities: Accusations of Communism, Then and Now • Clay Calvert, University of Florida • This paper examines the complicated issues of community and defamatory meaning that arise in libel law when plaintiffs allege reputational harm within ethnic and geographically-bound micro-communities. The paper uses three recent cases involving false accusations of communism targeting Vietnamese war refugees residing in the United States as analytical springboards for tackling this issue. Although some scholars seemingly presumed libel-by-communism to be a relic of the Cold War era, the issue is very much alive and well in ethnic enclaves. The paper also contrasts the public policy concerns of libel-by-communism cases with the ones that animate the defamation-by-homosexuality disputes that are garnering significantly more scholarly attention.

Begging the Question of Content-Based Confusion: Examining Problems With a Key First Amendment Doctrine Through the Lens of Anti-Begging Statutes • Clay Calvert, University of Florida • This paper examines numerous problems now plaguing the fundamental dichotomy in First Amendment jurisprudence between content-based and content-neutral speech regulations. The troubles were highlighted by the U.S. Supreme Court’s 2014 divided decision in McCullen v. Coakley. Building from McCullen, this paper uses a quartet of federal court rulings from 2014 and 2013 involving anti-begging ordinances affecting the homeless as analytical springboards for examining these issues in depth. Ultimately, the paper proposes a three-step framework for mitigating the muddle and calls on the nation’s high court to take action to clarify the proper test for distinguishing between content-based and content-neutral regulations.

Calling Them Out: An Exploration of Whether Newsgathering May Be Punished As Criminal Harassment • Erin Coyle, Louisiana State University; Eric Robinson, Louisiana State University • Newsgathering requires repeated telephone calls, aggressive questions, and investigation of matters that can cause emotional distress. Some sources threaten to file or file harassment charges on the basis of such actions. This study explored whether state criminal harassment laws may be applied to punish newsgathering. This study found that the wording of most harassment laws should prevent their application to newsgathering. Nonetheless, journalists have been threatened to be charged or charged with harassment for newsgathering.

To Pray or Not to Pray: Sectarian Prayer in Legislative Meetings • Mallory Drummond, High Point University • The purpose of this research paper is to explore the Supreme Court’s seemingly inconsistent application of the First Amendment to sectarian prayer at legislative meetings. Recently, the Supreme Court reacted to prayer practices in Forsyth County, North Carolina and the Town of Greece, New York in what appears to be contradictory ways. This paper attempts to reconcile these decisions and offer suggestions to guide future decisions by local governments.

A First Amendment Right to Know For the Disabled: Internet Accessibility Under the ADA • Victoria Ekstrand, UNC – Chapel Hill • The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) will celebrate its 25th anniversary in 2015. Enacted by Congress and signed into law by President George H.W. Bush, the ADA was designed to ensure that people with disabilities are given independence, freedom of choice, control of their lives, the opportunity to blend fully and equally into the rich mosaic of the American mainstream. Title III of the ADA defines what kinds of public and private spaces must provide access and accommodations to the disabled. Missing from that list, because of the ADA’s timing, is the Internet, effectively shutting the disabled out of the rich marketplace of ideas online. This paper examines both the case law surrounding this omission and the foot-dragging of the executive and legislative branches in extending Title III to the Internet. It argues that extending Title III to the Internet may be bolstered by First Amendment right to know principles.

Network Neutrality and Consumer Demand for Better Than Best Efforts Traffic Management • Rob Frieden, Penn State University • This paper assesses whether and how Internet Service Providers (ISPs) can offer service enhancements for video traffic while still fully complying the new rules and regulations established by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) in March, 2015. The paper concludes that the FCC exacerbated regulatory uncertainty by failing to identify whether and how ISPs can provide higher quality of service treatment for high speed, bandwidth intensive video traffic.  The paper concludes that the FCC should identify how ISPs can reduce the potential for degraded delivery of mission critical, must see video content. The Commission should permit better than best efforts traffic routing provided it does not degrade conventional best efforts routing and serve anticompetitive goals.

The Angry Pamphleteer: Borderline Political Speech on Twitter and the True Threats Distinction under Watts v. United States • Brooks Fuller, UNC-Chapel Hill • Since the 1969 Supreme Court case Watts v. United States, courts have consistently held that politically motivated speech to or about public figures if the speech may be punished if it qualifies as true threats rather than protected political hyperbole. Criticism of public officials lies at the core of First Amendment protection, even when that criticism is caustic or crude. Such caustic speech appears on Twitter with increasing frequency, often pushing the boundaries of the constitutional guarantees of free speech. This paper explores the borderlines of protected political expression on Twitter. Through an analysis of the political speech-true threats cases that interpret Watts, this paper identifies and assesses three modes of analysis that lower courts use to distinguish political speech from true threats: 1) criteria-based analysis; 2) pure First Amendment balancing; and 3) line-crossing analysis. This paper concludes that of these three tests, criteria-based analysis is the most restrictive of borderline political speech and demonstrates how First Amendment balancing and line-crossing analyses appropriately address the speech realities of new media and political participation.

Scrutinizing the Public Health Debates Regarding the Adult Film Industry: An In-Depth Case Analysis of the Health-Based Arguments in Vivid Entertainment, LLC v. Fielding • Kyla Garret • In an effort to curb the spreading of sexually transmitted infections from the adult film industry to the surrounding community, the citizens of Los Angeles County, California, home to where 80 percent of all pornographic films are produced, passed the Safer Sex in the Adult Film Industry Act in November of 2012. Also known as Measure B, the ordinance requires the use of condoms during the production of all vaginal and anal sex scenes in hardcore porn. Posing significant obstacles for adult film production, industry leader Vivid Entertainment, LLC, responded by filing suit against Los Angeles County’s Department of Public Health in January of 2013 to obtain an injunction against the ordinance, claiming that the measure unconstitutionally infringes on the industry’s and its actors’ First Amendment Rights to freedom of speech and expression. Much of the debate surrounding Vivid Entertainment, LLC v. Fielding concerns the constitutionality of the ordinance, but little discussion reviews the underlying health claims presented in the case and the ordinance itself. This is an important case to explore as it is a case of first impression and could set a key precedent regarding health policy and First Amendment protected expression. The case is also likely to set precedent for future regulations specific to the adult film industry. Therefore, this paper first identifies the health-based arguments presented in Vivid Entertainment, LLC v. Fielding and then, utilizing a public health and health communication lens, analyzes the validity of these arguments to ultimately consider the constitutionality of Measure B.

Native Advertising: Blurring Commercial and Noncommercial Speech Online • Nicholas Gross, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, School of Journalism & Mass Communication • Mixing advertisement with art, entertainment, news, social commentary, and/or other content in the digital ecosystem, native advertising straddles the boundary between commercial and noncommercial speech. Similar forms of mixed-speech are examined through the lens of case law that has faced the task of separating commercial from noncommercial speech. This paper speculates on where native advertising might fall within this divide and what level of First Amendment protection this practice might merit under existing case precedent.

A Theory of Privacy and Trust • Woodrow Hartzog, Samford University’s Cumberland School of Law; Neil Richards, Washington University School of Law • The way we have talked about privacy has a pessimism problem. Privacy is conceptualized in negative terms, which leads us to mistakenly look for creepy new practices and focus excessively on privacy harms. This article argues that privacy should be thought of as enabling trust in information relationships. Privacy rules based on discretion, honesty, loyalty, and protection can promote trust in information relationships. There is a better path for privacy. Trust us.

Differential Reasonableness: A standard for evaluating deceptive privacy-promising technologies • Jasmine McNealy, University of Kentucky; Heather Shoenberger, University of Oregon School of Journalism and Communication • This paper reconsiders the Federal Trade Commission’s reasonable person standard with respect to deception in light of advances in technology, and the general lack of foundational understanding of how digital technologies work with respect to private information. We argue that the FTC should consider those technologies promising privacy to consumers under special analysis, much like the Commission examines those products and services targeting special groups like children, the elderly, and infirmed. Our argument is directed at what we call privacy-promising technologies. We define privacy-promising technologies as those mobile apps, software, online tools, etc., that claim privacy enhancement as part of their marketing strategies.

Access to Information About Lethal Injections: A First Amendment Theory Perspective • Emma Morehart, University of Florida; Kéran Billaud, University of Florida; Kevin Bruckenstein • This paper examines, through the lens of First Amendment theory, current judicial debate regarding the access rights of inmates and the public to detailed facts about lethal-injection drugs, personnel and procedures. The paper uses several 2014 appellate court disputes as analytical springboards, including the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit’s groundbreaking decision in Wood v. Ryan. The paper argues that the First Amendment doctrine developed in Press-Enterprise II too narrowly cabins and confines access rights in lethal-injection data cases. In contrast, three venerable theories of free expression – the marketplace of ideas, democratic self-governance and self-realization/human dignity – support the establishment of both an inmate’s and the public’s right to such information.

Cultural Variation on Commercial Speech Doctrine: India Exhibits Stronger Protections than the U.S. • Jane O’Boyle, University of South Carolina • India’s Constitution is younger than that of the United States, and this paper argues that it provides greater protections for commercial speech. This analysis reviews the major court decisions about commercial speech in both India and the United States, and compares the cultural distinctions of the two nations in defining its protections. Perhaps it is due to Americans’ sense of exceptionalism and their paternalistic government, but the U.S. Supreme Court has restricted commercial speech far more often than has the Supreme Court in India.

The Government Speech Doctrine & Specialty License Plates: A First Amendment Theory Perspective • Sarah Papadelias, University of Florida; Tershone Phillips, University of Florida; Rich Shumate, University of Florida • This paper examines, through the lens of First Amendment theory, the timely question of whether specialty license plates constitute private expression or government speech. In December 2014, the U.S. Supreme Court agreed to hear Walker v. Texas Division, Sons of Confederate Veterans to address this issue. Walker arises in the wake of substantial doctrinal disorder and confusion regarding the government speech standard since the Court’s 2009 ruling in Pleasant Grove City v. Summum. This paper argues that three venerable First Amendment theories – the marketplace of ideas, democratic self-governance and self-realization/human autonomy – pave a path for the Court to better understand the interests at stake in Walker and, in turn, to help resolve the doctrinal muddle.

Injunction Junction: A Theory- and Precedent-Based Argument for the Elimination of Speech Codes at American Public Universities • Barry Parks, University of Memphis • The issue of implementing speech codes on American public college campuses for the sake of regulating what should and should not be acceptable expression in the academic environment has been an intense legal debate for over 30 years. Arguments from the perspective of critical race theory—which calls for limits on expression for the sake of marginalized groups and voices—and First Amendment absolutism—which champions few limits on expression for the sake of a robust academic marketplace of ideas—have waged the two sides of the ongoing battle regarding speech on campus. However, in every instance where college speech codes have been challenged for constitutionality in the courts, free speech rights on campus have won. This study details the battle between opposing theoretical forces in the debate and chronologically surveys case law pertaining to American public college speech codes. Based on consistent legal precedent pointing to unconstitutionality on grounds of overbreadth, vagueness, and content-based restriction, this study argues that speech codes on college campuses should be eliminated.

First Amendment Protection or Right of Publicity Violation? Examining the Application of the Transformative Use Test in Keller and Hart • Sada Reed, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill • The United States Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals and Third Circuit Court of Appeals administered the transformative use test in Keller v. Electronic Arts, Inc. (2013) and Hart v. Electronic Arts, Inc. (2013), respectively. This paper analyzes sports-related misappropriation cases before Keller and Hart, examining the tests used, the courts’ justification for the test, and how the use differs from Keller and Hart. Results suggest inconsistent application of this test, particularly in video game-related cases.

Examining the Theoretical Assumptions Found Within the Supreme Court’s Use of the Marketplace Metaphor • Jared Schroeder, Augustana College • Supreme Court justices have employed the marketplace-of-ideas metaphor to communicate how they understand freedom of speech for nearly a century. The meanings behind metaphors, however, are not static. This study examines whether justices’ references to the metaphor in twenty-first-century cases remain primarily tied to the original meaning, one related to the Enlightenment ideas at the heart of Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes’s first use of the metaphor in 1919, or if the meaning has shifted to represent more discourse-based understandings of communication in democratic society, such as those put forth by John Dewey and Jürgen Habermas. The theoretical assumptions behind Enlightenment ideas and those of the discourse model differ substantially in regard to the nature of truth, the rationality of the individual, and the role of society. This study, through an analysis of recent Supreme Court decisions that referred to the marketplace metaphor, identifies evidence of a shift in the Court’s understanding of the foundational theoretical concepts behind the meaning of the metaphor. Importantly, the narrative that emerged from the analysis of the opinions suggested that when justices refer to the marketplace metaphor in contemporary decisions, they are commonly communicating meanings that relate with theoretical assumptions that differ from those that were at the heart of the metaphor as Justice Holmes introduced it into the Court’s vocabulary in 1919.

A Contextual Analysis of Neutrality: How Neutral is the Net? • Dong-Hee Shin; Hongseok Yoon; Jaeyeol Jung • This study compares and contrasts the U.S. and Korea in the context of network neutrality, focusing on debates among stakeholders and regulatory approaches. Similarities and differences are highlighted by comparisons within the broadband ecosystem framework: government functions, histories, people’s perceptions, regulatory approaches, legislative initiatives, and implementation. In Korea, a regulatory framework with suggested guidelines exists, and it can be used to address net neutrality in a case-by-case fashion. The U.S. follows a regulatory approach by creating enforceable non-discrimination rules. The findings in this study suggest that the issue is not only complicated because it is embedded contextually, but also because the respective parties’ diverse interests are multifaceted and vague. It is concluded, therefore, that a coherent and consistent approach is an effective way to govern neutrality.

Internet Governance Policy Framework, Networked Communities and Online Surveillance in Ethiopia • Tewodros Workneh, University of Oregon • The September 11, 2001 attacks on the United States unleashed an array of counter-terrorism initiatives across the world. Following the footsteps of the United States that adopted the Patriotic Act of 2001, many countries drafted and ratified anti-terrorism legal frameworks that targeted, among other things, communication systems and flows, on one hand, and journalistic reporting practices, on the other. In the past five years, traditionally democratic states like Australia, Great Britain, United States and New Zealand have come under attack for using these legal frameworks to undertake rampant online surveillance practices that significantly affected media freedoms. A more alarming trend, however, involves the broad and random interpretation of these laws in a number of states with authoritarian and quasi-authoritarian complexions. Anti-terrorism laws are increasingly used to tighten an already closed political space in many of these countries through criminalizing legitimate dissent and critical content. Under these anti-terrorism legal provisions, the most notable losers are journalists, bloggers and other media practitioners that have experienced attacks that range from verbal and physical abuses to torture and killings. This study attempts to discuss the chilling effect anti-terrorism laws brought to online communities in Ethiopia, and attempts to address (1) the metamorphosis of these laws in defining what an act of terrorism involves; (2) the ways the adoption of these laws condition networked communities and media freedoms.

The Digital Right to Be Forgotten in EU Law: Informational Privacy vs. Freedom of Expression • KYU YOUM; Ahran Park • The right to be forgotten allows an individual to demand that Google and other search engines erase links to information that he regards as prejudicial to him. In a landmark ruling, the European Court of Justice (ECJ) has read a right to be forgotten into the EU Data Protection Directive. Given that data protection as a global privacy vs. free speech issue deserves more systematic attention than ever, this paper examines the right to be forgotten in the European Union. Three questions provide the main focus: What’s the legal and theoretical framework of the right to be forgotten? How has the right to be forgotten evolved in EU law? What impact will the right to be forgotten exert on freedom of expression?

This is Just Not Wroking For Us: Why After Ten Years on the Job – It Is Time to Fire Garcetti • Jason Zenor • In Lane v. Franks, the U.S. Supreme Court held that public employees who give truthful testimony in court are protected so long as it was outside their ordinary job duties. This issue arose after ten years of the Garcetti rule which does not protect employee speech pursuant to their job duties- a nebulous topic in the digital era. In applying Garcetti, lower courts have extended it to include any speech that is a product of job duties. As a result, public employee speech that would serve the public interest is not protected as it is inherently a product of job duties. This paper applauds the new exception, but argues that the Court’s ruling was too narrow. Using the principles espoused in the case, this paper argues that the Court should have amended the Garcetti rule and refocused the test on the public trust rather than the employee-employer relationship

Debut Faculty Paper Competition
Feiner v. New York: How the Court Got it Wrong • Roy Gutterman, AEJMC member •
When Irving Feiner was pulled off a soapbox while giving a speech, his disorderly conduct arrest would ultimately lead to a Supreme Court case and precedent which changed the law. The heckler’s veto, emerged and changed the law of free speech. The heckler’s veto is alive and kicking in contemporary cases today.

The value and limits of extreme speech in a networked society: Revitalizing tolerance theory • Brett Johnson, University of Missouri • This paper argues that Bollinger’s tolerance theory of freedom of expression should be revitalized as the core theory to guide analyses of issues of harmful or extreme speech in an era of networked communication. The paper first analyzes traditional negative First Amendment theories and legal doctrines that delineate the values and harms of speech, and then synthesizes these theories with tolerance theory. The paper then applies this synthesis to issues of extreme speech in networked communications.

Facebook’s Free Speech Growing Pains: A Case Study in Content Governance • Brett Johnson, University of Missouri • This paper examines the evolution of Facebook’s rules governing users’ speech on its platform, from its earliest terms of service to its most recent Community Standards (March 2015). The goal is to highlight Facebook’s ongoing identity conflict between being a platform that promotes speech and one that offers a safe community for its users. Ultimately, this paper argues that Facebook must be more transparent about the operations of its entire system of governing users’ speech.

A right to violence: Comparing child rights generally to child First Amendment freedoms • William Nevin, University of West Alabama • This paper argues that children should have the right to consume and produce violent speech for two reasons: because (1) children have restricted rights only where there are serious risks and consequences and that does not apply in the speech setting and (2) where child speech rights are limited, they have been done so only in the area of sexually explicit material.

Racial slurs and ‘fighting words’: The question of whether epithets should be unprotected speech • William Nevin, University of West Alabama • This paper seeks to answer two questions: first, whether racial slurs are considered fighting words under the law and second, whether they should be. In answering both questions in the affirmative, the paper traces the development of the fighting words doctrine before examining contemporary fighting words prosecutions and cases involving slurs. The paper also compares racial slurs as fighting words to race-based defamation in order to address whether slurs should be fighting words.

ISP Liability for Defamation: Is Absolute Immunity Still Fair? • Ahran Park • Since the mid-1990s, American Internet Service Providers (ISPs) have enjoyed immunity from liability for defamation under Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act. As Congress originally intended in 1996, Section 230 has strongly protected freedom of online speech and allowed ISPs to thrive with little fear of being sued for online users’ comments. Such extraordinary statutory immunity for ISPs reflects American free-speech tradition that freedom of speech is preferred to reputation. Although the Internet landscape has changed over the past 20 years, American courts have applied Section 230 to shield ISPs almost invariably. ISPs won in 83 of 85 cases in 1997 to 2014. Nearly all types of ISPs have been held to be eligible for immunity unless they are original online speakers. Even when ISPs have operated websites that have left digital scarlet letters on individuals, they have not been liable if the ISPs did not create or develop the defamatory contents. Bloggers, as website operators, could be immunized even when they exercised the traditional editorial functions unlike the traditional journalists. This paper suggest that CDA Section 230 of the United States should be revised to rebalance reputation with freedom of speech.

FoIA in the Age of Open. Gov: A Quantitative Analysis of the performance of the Freedom of Information Act under the Obama and Bush Administrations. • ben wasike • Using government transparency as the conceptual framework, this study used six standard FoIA parameters to quantitatively analyze and compare FoIA performance between the Obama and Bush administrations in terms of: Efficiency, disposition, type of exemptions, redress, staff workload and overall demand. Results indicate that while efficiency is higher under Obama, agencies are releasing information only in part. While appeals were processed faster under Bush,petitioners have had more success under Obama. Additionally, FoIA staff workload has dramatically reduced under Obama. Demand for public records was also higher under Bush. One notable finding was that contrary to popular outcry, neither administration emphasized the national security and law enforcement exemptions to deny information. Legacy and commonality were also findings indicating that certain trends transcend the incumbent. The implications to government transparency are discussed within.

2015 Abstracts

International Communication 2015 Abstracts

Robert L. Stevenson Open Paper Competition
The Promise to the Arab World: Attribute Agenda Setting and Diversity of Attributes about U.S. President Obama in Arabic-Language Tweets • Mariam Alkazemi; Shahira Fahmy; Wayne Wanta, University of Florida; Ahmedabad Abdelzaheer Mahmoud Farghali, University of Arizona •
In 2009 U.S. President Barak Obama travelled to Cairo promising a new beginning between the US government and the Arab world that has been angry about the two US led wars in two Muslim nations and its perceived favoritism toward Israel (Kuttab, 2013; Wilson, 2012). Five years later, we analyzed Arabic-language twitter messages involving President Obama to examine cognitive and affective attributes. Results show that tweets by members of the media differed greatly from tweets by members of the public. The public was much more negative towards the U.S. President. Members of the public also were more likely to link the President to a wider range of countries, suggesting a greater diversity of attributes. The location of the source of the tweets showed a wide range, though dominated by the Middle East.

The New York Times and Washington Post: Misleading the Public about U.S. Drone Strikes • Jeff Bachman, American University’s School of International Service • This paper examines The New York Times’ and Washington Post’s coverage of U.S. drone strikes in Yemen and Pakistan to determine whether they have accurately reported on the number of civilians killed in drone strikes and the overall civilian impact, as well as whether they have placed drone strikes within their proper legal context. The author concludes that both newspapers have failed to accurately report the number of civilian casualties and have underemphasized the civilian impact of drone strikes, while also excluding international legal issues from their coverage.

Experiencing sexism: Responses by Indian women journalists to sexism and sexual harassment • Kalyani Chadha; Pallavi Guha; Linda Steiner, University of Maryland, College Park • This paper examines the everyday sexism and workplace sex discrimination experienced by women journalists in India. Nearly all attention to Indian women focuses on high profile cases of sexual assault. Our interviews with Indian women journalists, however, indicate that the problem is everyday sexism and workplace discrimination. Moreover, women say laws designed to protect women are ineffective and largely unenforced. We highlight the impact of the casualization of journalists labor, resulting from global market forces.

Integrating Self-Construal in Theory of Reasoned Action: Examining How Self-Construal, Social Norms, and Attitude Relate to Healthy Lifestyle Intention in Singapore • Soo Fei Chuah, Nanyang Technological University; Xiaodong Yang, Nanyang Technological University; Liang Chen, Nanyang Technological University; Shirley Ho, Nanyang Technological University • This study would like to investigate Singaporeans’ intention to adopt healthy lifestyle by integrating the concept of self-construal into the Theory of Reasoned Action. The results revealed that attitudes toward healthy lifestyle and subjective norms are associated with healthy lifestyle behavioral intentions. Besides, interdependent self-construal is associated with individuals’ attitude and subjective norm. The study also found that there is an indirect relationship between subjective norms and behavioral intention through individuals’ attitude.

We Choose to Tweet: Twitter Users’ Take on Rwanda Day 2014 • Sally Ann Cruikshank, Auburn University; Jeremy Saks, Ohio University • This study centers on the usage of Twitter related to Rwanda Day 2014 in Atlanta, Georgia. The event allowed Rwandan diaspora to gather to celebrate Rwandan culture and included a speech by President Paul Kagame. A content analysis of two hashtags related to the event, #RwandaDay and #Twahisemo, was performed. Utilizing social identity theory, the researchers explored how various groups tweeted about Rwanda Day 2014 and President Kagame. Findings and implications are discussed at length.

Testing the effect of message framing and valence on national image • Ming Dai, Southeastern Oklahoma State University • Using the episodic and thematic framing concepts, the study was designed to understand the influence of message format and its interaction with message valence in influencing perceptions of foreign countries, policy attitudes and policy choice. The experimental study examined young Americans’ responses to news articles about the US’s policy toward China to change the human rights conditions in the country. The findings indicated that episodically framed message was more interesting to read. The episodically framed positive article improved perceptions of China’s human rights conditions, but it did not worsen the perceptions. The episodically framed negative article was not the most powerful influence on the perceptions, policy attitudes and policy choice. Thematic frame was more powerful than episodic frame on policy attitude in both positive and negative stories. Implications for national image promotion through media are discussed.

Fighting for recognition: online abuse of political women bloggers in Germany, Switzerland, the UK and US • Stine Eckert • This study finds that women in Germany, Switzerland, the United Kingdom, and the United States who blog about politics or are feminists face great risks of online abuse. In-depth interviews with 109 bloggers who write about women, family, and/or maternity politics revealed that 73.4 percent had negative experiences. Using theoretical approaches that emphasize how offline hierarchies migrate online, this study calls for more empirical work on and global recognition of online harassment as punishable crimes.

Ironic Encounters: Constructing Humanitarianism through Slum Tourist Media • Brian Ekdale, University of Iowa; David Tuwei, University of Iowa • Following Steeves (2008) and Chouliaraki (2013), we argue that slum tourist media signify an ironic encounter, one in which tourists construct a humanitarian Self in contrast to an impoverished Other. Our analysis focuses on three-high profile texts produced by tourists of Kibera, a densely populated low-income community in Nairobi, Kenya: the BBC’s reality television special Famous, Rich and in the Slums, the book Megaslumming: A Journey Through sub-Saharan Africa’s Largest Shantytown, and a White House slideshow about Jill Biden’s tour of Kibera. In these ironic encounters, slum tourism is justified as necessary for coveted experiential knowledge, as a platform for tourists to share their newfound expertise on global poverty, and as a source of encouragement and enlightenment for slum residents.

The Signs of Sisi Mania: A Semiotic and Discourse Analysis of Abdelfattah Al-Sisi’s Egyptian Presidential Campaign • Mohammed el-Nawawy; Mohamad Elmasry • This study employed semiotic analysis to examine the sign system in two of Abdelfattah Al-Sisi’s 2014 Egyptian presidential campaign posters, and discourse analysis to uncover dominant discourses in Al-Sisi’s most prominent campaign video. The semiotic analysis showed that the campaign presented Al-Sisi as a familiar, yet transcendent, figure, while the discourse analysis suggested that the video producers discursively constructed Al-Sisi as the ultimate patriot and a strongman with immense leadership abilities.

Exploring the relationship between Myanmar consumers’ social identity, attitudes towards globalization, and consumer preferences • Alana Rudkin, American University; Joseph Erba, University of Kansas • Myanmar is transitioning to an open market economy, but very little is known about Myanmar consumers and their attitudes towards globalization. Using Hofstede’s cultural dimensions and social identity theory, this exploratory study aimed to shed light on the role Myanmar consumers’ cultural values and social identity play in consumer preferences. Results from a cross-sectional survey of Myanmar consumers (N = 268) provide insights into Myanmar culture and how to effectively communicate with Myanmar consumers.

Food and Society: A Cross-Cultural Comparison of Food Advertising Claims in the U.S. and China • Yang Feng, The University of Virginia’s College at Wise; Lingda Li, Communication University of China • This study explored the socio-economic (food safety issues and regulations) and cultural factors affecting the use of advertising claims across two countries: the U.S. and China. Results from the content analyses of 324 U.S. and 81 Chinese food advertisements indicated that quality claims, health claims, nutrient content claims, and structure/function claims were more often used in Chinese food advertisements than in the U.S. food advertisements, whereas taste claims were more frequently adopted in the U.S. food advertisements than their Chinese counterparts. Moreover, while Chinese food advertisements tended to include more healthy foods than their U.S. counterparts, the U.S. food advertisements were inclined to contain more unhealthy foods than their Chinese counterparts. Overall, results suggested that the use of food advertising claims reflected the local market’s socio-economic situations and cultural values. Implications and limitations were discussed.

To Share or Not to Share: The Influence of News Values and Topics on Popular Social Media Content in the U.S., Brazil, and Argentina • Victor Garcia, University of Texas at Austin; Ramón Salaverría, School of Communication, University of Navarra; Danielle Kilgo; Summer Harlow, Florida State University • As news organizations strive to create news for the digital environment, audiences play an increasingly important role in evaluating content. This comparative study of the U.S., Argentina, and Brazil explores values and topics present in news content and the variances in audience interaction on social media. Findings suggest values of timeliness and conflict/controversy and government/politics topics trigger more audience responses. Articles in the Brazilian media prompted more interactivity than those in the U.S. or Argentina.

Journalists in peril: In-depth interviews with Iraqi journalists covering everyday violence • Goran Ghafour, The university of Kansas; Barbara Barnett, The University of Kansas • After the overthrow of Saddam Hussein in 2003, Iraqi journalists enjoyed an unprecedented free press—albeit short-lived. With the emergence of ISIS, Iraqi journalists have witnessed a harsher wave of violence. Based on in-depth interviews with nine Iraqi journalists, this study found that journalists not only covered violence but perceived violence as a government tool used to control them. In spite of threats to their lives, journalists said they were committed to their jobs.

Advocating Social Stability and Territorial Integrity: The China Daily’s Framing of the Arab Spring • Jae Sik Ha, Univ Of Illinois-Springfield; Dong-Hee Shin • This study examines how The China Daily, China’s authoritative English newspaper, framed the Arab Spring, a social movement in the Middle East. Specifically, it compares news stories appearing in The China Daily from Chinese reporters with those obtained from Western wire services. The study found that the Chinese journalists attempted to accuse the West, including the U.S. government, of being responsible for the chaos and violence occurring in the Arab world. The Chinese journalists also stressed China’s national interests and concerns (i.e. social stability, national unity, and territorial integrity) in their coverage. They relied on Chinese government officials and experts as news sources, whereas Western journalists quoted those involved in the protests more often. China’s national interests primarily shaped the news within The China Daily; the paper has served as a useful tool for the Chinese government in its public diplomacy efforts, which seek to present China as a harmonious, stable, and reliable nation.

Depiction of Chinese in New Zealand journalism • Grant Hannis • Media depictions of Chinese in Western countries often rely on the Yellow Peril and model minority stereotypes. This paper considers the nature of coverage of Chinese in New Zealand print journalism to determine whether it uses these stereotypes. Although the rampant Yellow Peril hysteria of early 20th-century coverage had largely disappeared 100 years later, there continued to be a significant amount of negatively toned coverage – primarily crime – rather than use of the model minority stereotype.

Liberation Technology? Understanding a Community Radio Station’s Social Media Use in El Salvador • Summer Harlow, Florida State University • This ethnographic study of the Salvadoran community station Radio Victoria explores how the radio used Facebook to encourage citizen participation and action, despite the digital divide. Analysis showed who participated and how they participated changed because of Facebook. This study contributes to scholarship by including technology as fundamental to the study of alternative media and by expanding our conceptualization of the digital divide to include whether social media are used in frivolous or liberating ways.

Predicting international news flow from Reuters: Money makes the world go round • Beverly Horvit, University of Missouri; Peter Gade, University of Oklahoma; Yulia Medvedeva, University of Missouri; Anthony Roth, University of Missouri School of Journalism; Michael Phinney, University of Missouri • This content analysis surveyed more than 13,000 news stories to identify the factors that predict the amount of business and non-business coverage allocated to world countries by Reuters newswire in 2006 and 2014. Findings revealed that country’s world-system status ratio suggested by Gunaratne serves as the most reliable predictor of the volume of coverage. U.S. firms’ investments in a country and the number of significant events serve as additional reliable predictors of country’s news visibility.

Learning how to do things right: Lessons from the digital transition in Bulgaria • Elza Ibroscheva, Southern Illinois University Edwardsville; Maria Raicheva-Stover, Washburn University • The paper examines the latest developments in the digital switchover in Bulgaria, focusing on the specific the challenges that this new EU member faces. Exploring the digitization efforts of a novice EU policy actor such as Bulgaria is critical as it demonstrates the complex processes that nations in transition undergo as they build a Western-type democracy and navigate the complexities of media policies attached to such transitional adjustments. By offering an in-depth media analysis of the current developments, the players in the process of digital conversion in Bulgaria and its political prominence, might reveal the obstacles and challenges that other transitional democracies might face when media developments are caught at a crossroad— at the international level, the EU call for a free market competition and transparency of capital, and at the local level, continuous attempts to obscure the source of capital and thus, protect powerful local players that wield enormous power and control over public opinion, thus, single-highhandedly steering the processes of democratization and media transformation they foster.

Determining the Factors Influencing the News Values of International Disasters in the U.S. News Media • YONGICK JEONG, Louisiana State University; Sun Young Lee, Texas Tech University • We explore various factors that influence the news value of international disasters in 10 representative U.S. news outlets over a four-week period. Our findings suggest that internal disaster factors are most consistent and significant in covering international disasters in the U.S. When disaster coverage is extended over a longer period, other external factors, such as trade relations with the U.S., distance from the U.S., GDP, military expenditure, and political rights, come into play as well.

Military Intervention or Not?: A Textual Analysis of the Coverage on Syria in Foreign Affairs and China Daily • Cristina Mislan; Haiyan Jia, The Pennsylvania State University • A growing public conversation about the United States’ pivot toward the Asian continent has highlighted the tense relations between the United States and China. While convergence of each country’s foreign policy interests has become of great concern for the United, US influence throughout the Middle East demonstrates the United States’ inability to disengage from the Middle East. This paper contributes to historical conversations about the lifespan of foreign policy by comparing US and Chinese foreign policy through an analysis of both countries’ national media coverage. The authors conducted a discourse analysis of the coverage on intervention in the Syrian civil war in Foreign Affairs and China Daily between April and September 2013. Findings illustrate three themes addressing the intervention strategies and underlying approaches adopted in each media source, their representations of the international structure, and the perceptions of each country regarding China’s international presence in the twenty-first century.

Social Network Discussion, Life Satisfaction and Quality of life • Chang Won Jung; Hernando Rojas • The study explores the relationship between the cross-cutting discussion and two aspects of satisfaction: life satisfaction (individual) and quality of life (societal). This research suggests how individuals’ media use, SNSs, social network discussion, heterogeneous discussion, and associational membership contribute to satisfaction based on a Colombia national sample, N=1031 (2012). The finding suggests that heterogeneous discussion negatively predicts life satisfaction, yet positively predicts quality of life. The use of SNSs only positively predicts quality of life.

Influence of Facebook on Body Image and Disordered Eating in Kazakhstan and USA • Karlyga N. Myssayeva, Al-Farabi Kazakh National University; Stephanie Smith, Ohio University; Yusuf Kalyango Jr., Ohio University; Ayupova Zaure Karimovna, Al-Farabi Kazakh National University • Women in the United States of America (USA) are ranked fourth heaviest in the world, while women in Kazakhstan are generally thin. This difference in average female weight leads to interesting questions regarding perceptions of beauty. Is there less negative body image in Kazakhstan given that, on average, Kazakh women are slimmer compared to American women? The thin ideal is pervasive in all genres of mass media and has been linked to negative body image, which in turn is a risk factor for eating disorders, and a significant predictor of low self-esteem, depression, and obesity. Young women spend an increasing amount of time with social media both in Kazakhstan and the USA, but the relationship between this growing exposure and body image is not fully understood. This study uses objectification to examine the relationship between time spent on Facebook and body image among Kazakh and American college women. Time on Facebook predicted BSQ and EAT-26© scores in Kazakhstan but did not in the USA, suggesting Facebook may have a more subtle effect in the USA. Time on Facebook predicted attention to appearance and negative feelings in both countries. Practical and theoretical implications are detailed.

Dirty Politics in New Zealand: How newspaper reporters and online bloggers constructed the professional values of journalism at a time of crisis • Linda Jean Kenix • This research explores how different facets of the New Zealand media system conceptualized journalism and their own perceived role within journalistic practice at a particular moment of crisis. This study found a recurrent reflexive protectionism displayed by journalists while bloggers readily explored the extent of journalism doxa, albeit through a politicized lens. If journalism is measured, in part, by the values on display in written text, then bloggers emerged from this controversy as professional journalists.

A Theoretical Approach to Understanding China’s Consumption of the Korean Wave • Sojung Kim, Chinese University of Hong Kong; Qijun He, the Chinese University of Hong Kong • This study investigates how globalism, proximity, and modernity influence China’s motivation to consume the Korean wave and its subsequent consumption of Korean TV programs. The findings suggest that the motivation to consume the Korean wave is positively related to globalism and proximity. Modernity, however, is found to have a negative influence on the motivation. The study also finds that the motivation to consume the Korean wave has a significant impact on the consumption of Korean TV programs. In the revised model, the study suggests that proximity, followed by globalism, has the strongest positive relationship with the motivation. Such a finding suggests that proximity approach could serve as a better theoretical perspective to explain the phenomenon of the Korean wave in China.

Soft Power and Development Efforts: An Analysis of Foreign Development Efforts As Covered in 28 Senegalese Dailies • Jeslyn Lemke, University of Oregon, School of Journalism and Communication • This study is a quantitative content analysis that explores the connection between foreign development initiatives in Senegal and the rate of coverage these foreign initiatives receive, using a sample of 28 editions of five major Senegalese daily newspapers. The purpose of this study is to explore the connection between J. Nye’s soft power, Western imperialism and the related influence of Western organizations intervening into the Senegalese economy and civilian life, as measured in these newspapers.

Migrant Worker of News vs. Superman: Why Local Journalists in China and the U.S. Perceive Different Self-Image • Zhaoxi Liu, Trinity University • Conversations with local journalists in China and the U.S. reveal quite different self-image as journalists. Whereas Chinese journalists label themselves migrant workers of news, American journalists generally hold the notion that journalists inform the public to maintain democracy and even act like superman to make a change. To better understand such differences, the article argues, one has to examine journalists as interpretive communities situated in specific social environment.

Beyond Cultural Imperialism to Postcolonial Global Discourses: Korean Wave (Hallyu) and its Fans in Qatar • Saadia Malik, Qarar University • This paper aims to understand K-pop culture and its fans in Qatar through asking the question: How audiences/fans of K-pop culture in Qatar interact, negotiate and define themselves as audiences/fans of Korean pop-culture. To answer this question, the papers adopts postcolonial discourses on globalization as a theoretical approach that advocates multi-flow of culture and globalization and places fans of K-pop culture in Qatar within the framework of transnational fandom of non-western hybrid popular culture. Moreover, the theoretical framework advocates audience’s (fans) agency in negotiating and consuming K-pop cultural products. Group interviews were conducted with some young Arab women who define themselves as fans of K-pop culture in order to bring their views and opinions as K-pop fans to the center of analysis in this paper. The Young Arab women I interacted with through this research have created their own non-institutionalized voluntary fan ‘community’ (subculture) as K-pop fans. This ‘community’ or cultural ‘ecumene’ stands as an ‘identity space’ through which they can express their cultural identity as fans of K-pop culture bonded by Korean language and by shared expressed cultural symbols from K-pop culture itself.

He is a Looker Not a Doer: New Masculinity in Men’s Magazine In India • Suman Mishra • After 2005, several transnational men’s magazines have been introduced in India because of changes in Indian government’s policy. However, little is known about how these magazines are shaping masculine ideals of urban Indian men. Through an examination of magazine advertising content, this study finds a focus on aesthetic metrosexuality. This form of masculinity sits comfortably at the global-local nexus and serves to assimilate upper class Indian men into a global consumer class.

Asian Crisis Communications: Perspectives from the MH370 Disappearance and Sewol Ferry Disaster • Jeremy Chan; Bohoon Choi; Adrian Seah; Wan Ling Tan; Fernando Paragas • This paper examines two national addresses by the leaders of South Korea and Malaysia in response to pivotal crises in their respective countries. Using Critical Discourse Analysis, our findings show both speeches employed crisis communication strategies aligned with the Situational Crisis Communications Theory. However, key differences in how these strategies have been used in either speech precludes a prescription of a uniform Asian crisis communication response given the diversity of national cultures in the continent.

Idiocentrism versus Allocentrism and Illegal Downloading Intention between the United States and South Korea • Namkee Park, Yonsei University, South Korea; Hyun Sook Oh, Pyeongtaek University, South Korea; Naewon Kang, Dankook University, South Korea; Seohee Sohn, Yonsei University, South Korea • This study employed the personality dimension of idiocentrism and allocentrism to examine the difference in illegal downloading intention between the U.S college students and South Korean ones. The study uncovered that South Korean students had a higher intention of illegal downloading than the U.S. counterparts. The study also found that, for the U.S. students, idiocentrics exhibited a higher intention of illegal downloading than allocentrics. For South Korean students, allocentrics showed a higher intention than idiocentrics.

Cultural Capital at its Best: Factors Influencing Consumption of American Television Programs among Young Croatians • Ivanka Pjesivac, University of Georgia; Iveta Imre, Western Carolina University • This study examined factors that influence the consumption of American television programs among young Croatians, by conducting a paper and pencil survey (N=487). The results indicate that young Croatians are avid consumers of American dramas and sitcoms, and that a set of cultural capital variables is a significant predictor of the consumption of American TV. Knowledge of English language, of U.S. lifestyle, consumption of American movies and American press all had a significant unique contribution to the model.

Do Demographics Matter? Individual Differences in Perceived News Media Corruption in Serbia • Ivanka Pjesivac, University of Georgia • This study examined individual differences in perceived news media corruption (PNMC), by conducting a face-to-face survey on a representative sample of the Serbian population (N=544). Extremely high levels of PNMC were found, as well as significant differences in PNMC scores for gender, education level, socioeconomic status, political affiliation, and membership in majority ethnic and religious groups. Corruption perception persona types are created and results are discussed in terms of importance of societal integration for PNMC.

Charities in Chile: Trust and Commitment in the Formation of Donor’s Behavioral Loyalty • Cristobal Barra; Geah Pressgrove, West Virginia University; Eduardo Torres-Moraga • This study explores the ways in which trust and commitment lead to loyalty in the Latin American organization-donor context. Findings support a multi-dimension sequentially ordered conceptualization of loyalty that starts with cognitive loyalty, followed by affective loyalty and with behavioral loyalty as the penultimate outcome. Further, findings indicate that neither trust nor commitment affects behavioral loyalty directly; rather, the effects of these variables are present in earlier stages of the formation of loyalty

Thatcherism and the Eurozone crisis: A social systems-level analysis of British, Greek, and German news coverage of Margaret Thatcher’s death • Sada Reed, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill; Yioryos Nardis, Unaffiliated; Emily Ogilvie; Daniel Riffe • The following study examines British, Greek, and German newspapers’ coverage of former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher’s death in order to argue that proximity as a news value is not limited to media routines, but is part of nations’ social systems. Results suggest that journalists interpreted the meaning of Thatcher’s legacy and death more in proximity to their respective nation’s weathering of the European economic storm than through the lens of their newspaper’s political leaning.

An Exploratory Study on Journalistic Professionalism and Journalism Education in Contemporary China • Baohui Shao; qingwenn dong Dong, university of the pacific • Journalism education plays an important role to cultivate future professional journalists. Chinese journalism education has boomed up in recent decades, however, journalism graduates are not welcomed by media organizations. Through in-depth interviews with professional journalists and journalism educationalists, this paper finds that their perception of journalistic professionalism is focusing on journalistic expertise, commitment, and responsibility but eschewing journalistic autonomy deliberately and Chinese journalism education concentrates on rigid journalism knowledge without profession or practical ability.

Sex Trafficking in Thai Media: A content analysis of issue framing • Meghan Sobel, Regis University • Understanding how news media frame sex trafficking in Thailand, a country with high levels of trafficking and an understudied media landscape, has strong implications for how the public and policymakers understand and respond to the issue. This quantitative content analysis analyzed 15 years of trafficking coverage in five English-language Thai newspapers and found a focus on female victims, international aspects of trafficking and official sources with a lack of discussion of risk factors and solutions.

Reimagining Internet Geographies: A User-Centric Ethnological Mapping of the World Wide Web • Angela Xiao Wu, Chinese University of Hong Kong; Harsh Taneja, University of Missouri, School of Journalism • Existing imageries of the WWW prioritize media infrastructure and content dissemination. We propose a new imagery foregrounding local usage and it’s shaping by local cultural identity and political economy. We develop granular measures and construct ethnological maps of WWW usage through a network analysis of shared global traffic between top 1000 websites in 2009, 2011 and 2013. Our results reveal the significant growth and thickening of online regional cultures associated with the global South.

Producing Communities and Commodities: Safaricom and Commercial Nationalism in Kenya • David Tuwei, University of Iowa; Melissa Tully, University of Iowa • This research analyzes Safaricom, one of the most established mobile operators in Kenya. Alongside the provision of mobile services, Safaricom has closely engaged with the government of Kenya, even getting involved in the nation’s politics. This study specifically examines Safaricom’s marketing, which reflects a commitment to promoting the country and its products through discourses of commercial nationalism. These discourses link Kenyan identity, pride, and distinctiveness to commercial success, profit, upward mobility, and development.

The dependency gap: Story types and source selection in coverage of an international health crisis • Fred Vultee, Wayne State University; Fatima Barakji, Wayne State University; Lee Wilkins • The growing interactivity of news, and the growing number of ways in which it can get around traditional barriers of news practice or social/legal constraint, underscores the value of revisiting theory as a guide to analysis and practice. This paper adds to media systems dependency theory by reinterpreting its emphasis on the individual actor to incorporate both audience members and journalists themselves as well as the political context in which news accounts are created and recounted. It then tests these revised theoretical notions in a cross-national content analysis of coverage of an emerging disease in the Arabian Gulf. Results suggest that predictable patterns of sourcing and topic selection hold in some circumstances and are challenged in others.

Africa rising: An analysis of emergent mass communication scholarship in Africa from 2004 – 2014. • ben wasike • In the first comprehensive and longitudinal analysis of Africa-based mass communication research since David Edeani’s (1995) study of the same, this study analyzed a census of Africa-based mass communication research published worldwide between years 2004 – 2014. Results show that Africa-based scholarship uniquely differs from mainstream and other emergent research in terms of analyzing newspapers content over television and the heavy use of case studies. Confluence with other research spheres includes being atheoretical, qualitative and non-empirical.

Examining global journalism: how global news networks frame the ISIS threat • Xu Zhang, Texas Tech University; lea hellmueller, Texas Tech University • The results of a quantitative content analysis of 393 news reports on the ISIS threat from CNN and Al-Jazeera English suggests that in time of globalization different transnational news outlets share common features in their news coverage of global challenges, while important differences still co-exist. On the contrary to the concept of global journalism, reporting the global event from a global perspective is far from conclusion, even for those transnational news outlets.

Markham Student Paper Competition
Source Nationality, Authority and Credibility: A Multi-National Experiment using the Diaoyu/Senkaku Island Dispute • Krystin Anderson, University of Florida; Xiaochen Zhang, University of Florida; Shintaro Sato, University of Florida; Hideo Matsumoto, Tokai University •
This study investigates the relationship between source authority type and source nationality on credibility and peace message reception in context of the Diaoyu/Senkaku Island dispute. Through three separate experiments conducted in the U.S., China and Japan, it finds a significant relationship between source nationality and credibility and an interaction between nationality and authority type. The study offers implications for peace journalism, suggesting that source choice is an important factor in reporting peace initiatives.

What’s in a name? The renewal of development journalism in the 21st century • Kendal Blust • Development journalism has been dismissed as a form of government controlled media but continues to interest scholars and practitioners alike. A new form of development journalism is being used in which international development issues are reported from the outside in. The Guardian’s Global Development site is explored through ethnographic content analysis as a model for development journalism from the outside and a comparison with previous definitions.

Young wife from Sikkim allegedly raped: Understanding the framing of rape reportage in Indian media • DHIMAN CHATTOPADHYAY, Bowling Green State University • This paper explores the framing of rape reportage in India’s English language media, conducting a mixed method content analysis of how 25 Indian newspapers, magazines and television channels reported the same incident of rape on their respective websites. The results showed that the victim’s credibility was often doubted and both victim and accused were otherized. Also attributes such as marital status, age, profession and ethnicity were considered vital information to be conveyed to audiences. This study hopes to contribute to the nascent but growing body of academic work that has started to look at the growing incidents of rape in India and how the media frames and communicates incidents of rapes and rape culture in general to its audiences

Permission to Narrate? Palestinian Perspectives in U.S. Media Coverage of Operation Cast Lead • Britain Eakin, University of Arizona • This study explores the presence of Palestinian narratives in U.S. media coverage in the New York Times and the Los Angeles Times during Operation Cast Lead, the 22-day long Israeli military operation in Gaza, which lasted from late December 2008 through January 22, 2009. Utilizing a postcolonial framework this study examines the coverage as part of the Orientalist legacy that shapes American perceptions of Palestinians, and how those perceptions might manifest themselves in relation to the presence of or lack of Palestinian narratives in media coverage of Operation Cast Lead. This study finds that to a limited extent, Palestinian narratives are present in the reporting, however lack of context overshadowed their legitimacy.

MH17 Tragedy: An Analysis of Cold War and Post-Cold War Media Framing of Airline Disasters • Abu Daud Isa, West Virginia University • This paper builds on similar studies that examined newspaper coverage of airline disasters during the Cold War in the 1980s. It explores new Cold War frames in The New York Times and The Moscow Times coverage of Malaysian Airlines Flight MH17, which was shot down over Ukraine in 2014. The research reveals an absence of hostile Cold War assertions, but found frames were consistent with the respective U.S. and Russian diplomatic positions.

Journalists Jailed and Muzzled: Government and Government-inspired Censorship in Turkey during AKP Rule • Duygu Kanver, Michigan State University • During Justice and Development Party (AKP) rule, politics have been overly influential on news media in Turkey. The AKP government’s connections with highly politicized media owners have led to a politically-oriented, polarized media landscape where journalists cannot report freely and objectively. This study explores limitations on freedom of the press, which include ongoing censorship due to direct and indirect involvement of the government, and hundreds of journalist imprisonments between 2008 and 2013.

Burma/Myanmar’s Exile Media in Transition: Exploring the Relationship between Alternative Media, Market Forces & Public Sphere Formation • Brett Labbe, Bowling Green State University • This study examines the historical development of Myanmar/Burma’s independent exile media alongside their recent integration into the country and ongoing financial reconfigurations. Employing documentary research, observation of Burma/Myanmar’s current media landscape, and interviews with senior editors of the country’s former exile media, this investigation explores these organizations’ changing institutional practices and relationships to the nation’s political and public spheres in order to examine reigning conceptualizations of ‘alternative media’ and its relationship to market forces and public sphere formation. This study found that the country’s exile media’s transition into the country has provided new avenues of journalistic ‘space,’ yet not necessarily conductive to these organizations’ traditional alternative media values.

Spotlight on Qatar: A framing analysis of labor rights issues in the news blog Doha News • Elizabeth Lance, Northwestern University in Qatar; Ivana Vasic, Independent; Rhytha Zahid Hejaze • This study examines coverage of labor rights issues in the online-only news blog Doha News (Qatar) to identify the prominent frames used. Additionally, this study compares those prominent frames with those found in the English-language daily Gulf Times (Qatar), identifying several differences. This study is useful in understanding how an online-only news blog covers a controversial issue in a restrictive press environment.

Digitally enabled citizen empowerment in East and Southeast Asia • SHIN HAENG LEE, University of Washington • This study assessed the impact of new information technologies on citizen empowerment in Asian political communication systems as the emerging digital network market. The World Values Survey provided cross-national data, gathered during the two periods: 2005–2007 (Wave 5) and 2010–2013 (Wave 6). The results showed that online information seeking had mobilizing effects on political participation in both WVS waves. This relationship was nevertheless conditional on the existing information gap.

Linguistic Abstractness as a Discursive Microframe: LCM Framing in International Reporting by American News • Josephine Lukito, Syracuse University • This study examined whether American news coverage of a country would be framed differently based on the country’s proximity or interactions with the United States. The Linguistic Category Model was used to code for language abstractness. Seven proximity and interaction variables were studied. Results suggest that countries with little proximity or with weak ties to the U.S. were framed abstractly. Implications are discussed, and the LCM frame is identified as a discursive microframe (DMF).

Online networking and protest behaviors in Latin America • Rachel Mourao, The University of Texas at Austin; Shannon McGregor, University of Texas – Austin; Magdalena Saldana, The University of Texas at Austin • The relationship between online networking and protest participation is a focal point of scholarly attention, yet few studies address it in the context of Latin American democracies. Using data from the 2012 Americas-Barometer public opinion survey, we assess how online networking affects protest behavior in the region. Findings suggest that online networking leads to moderate protest behaviors. Results indicate protest participation has been normalized in the region, a sign of the strength of democratic states.

Twitter Diplomacy between India and the United States: A Qualitative Content Analysis of Tweets during Presidential State Visits • Jane O’Boyle, University of South Carolina • India’s economic and political influence is growing, and its expansion of Twitter users provides more opportunity for international agenda-building. This qualitative analysis studies Twitter comments from the U.S. and India (N=11,532) during reciprocal state visits by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Barack Obama, when the most retweets in both countries were from the White House and Times of India, reflecting agenda-building effects. American comments were more negative about Obama than about Modi. Analysis addresses implications for agenda-building global public diplomacy.

Jokes in Public: The Ethical Implications of Radio Prank Calls • Subin Paul, University of Iowa; John C Carpenter • The use of prank calls is becoming increasingly common among radio hosts in the international arena. This study examines the ethics behind the practice of radio prank calls and their implications for mainstream journalism through Systematic Moral Analysis and Kantianism. It shows that while radio prank calls can contribute to the public sphere, they can also have unintended negative consequences that reflect badly not only on radio hosts, but also on mainstream journalists.

Reporting in Latin America: Issues and perspectives on investigative journalism in the region • Magdalena Saldana, The University of Texas at Austin; Rachel Mourao, The University of Texas at Austin • Despite its importance in fostering transparent democracies, watchdog journalism is not exempt from external influences. This study investigates the challenges faced by investigative journalism in Latin America. Guided by the Hierarchy of Influences model, we analyzed answers from 1,453 journalists in the region. Results reveal that more than two decades after the liberalization of media systems, journalists still face constraints related to clientelistic practices and personal security as the main challenges to investigative reporting.

Protesting the Paradigm: A Comparative Study of News Coverage of Protests in Brazil, China, and India • Saif Shahin, The University of Texas at Austin; Pei Zheng, The University of Texas at Austin; Heloisa Aruth Sturm, University of Texas at Austin; Deepa Fadnis • This study examines the coverage of Brazilian, Chinese, and Indian protests in their domestic news media to clarify the scope and applicability of the protest paradigm—a theory based primarily on U.S. media coverage of social movements. Using comparative analysis, it shows that the paradigm does not squarely apply in foreign contexts, but also identifies those aspects of it which are relevant for international research. Broader implications and ideas for future studies are discussed.

Trust in the media and its predictors in three Latin American countries • Vinicio Sinta, University of Texas at Austin; Victor Garcia, University of Texas at Austin; Ji won Kim • Declining public trust in the news media continues to be a matter of concern for scholars of mass communication and politics. In Latin America, the historically close links between media and political elites present an opportunity to obtain new insights about how trust in the news media relates to trust in other social institutions. In addition to these relationships, this study explores how demographic variables, media use and perceptions of public issues shape confidence in the news media in three Latin American countries: Chile, Colombia and Mexico. The results support previous findings about how the consumption of online news relates to a decline in trust in legacy news media. Additionally, favorable perceptions of economic performance and increased trust in other social institutions were also positive predictors of media trust in certain contexts.

Seeking Cultural Relevance : Use of Culture Peg and Culture Link in International Newsreporting • Miki Tanikawa, University of Texas • This study describes the prevalence of culturally oriented writing techniques found in international news coverage of major American newspapers, through a concept explication and content analysis. These techniques, which I call culture peg and culture link, are content choices that journalists make to enhance the material’s appeal to their home audience. A content analysis found that such cultural strategies were employed in 72 percent of international news articles in the New York Times.

Reporting War in 140 Characters: How Journalists Used Twitter during the 2014 Gaza-Israel Conflict • Ori Tenenboim, School of Journalism, the University of Texas at Austin • This study examines how journalists used Twitter during the 2014 Gaza war, while comparing Israeli journalists with reporters who work for international news outlets. The results show that the two groups differed in their choice of topics, the sources they cited, and the use of Twitter affordances – retweeting and replying. The study contributes to a better understanding of gatekeeping on social media in a time of war, which poses unique dilemmas and concerns for journalists.

How Do They Think Differently? A Social Media Advertising Attitude Survey on Chinese Students in China and Chinese Students in America • Anan Wan, University of South Carolina • This study explored whether Chinese students in both China and in America had different attitudes toward social media advertising, and how those attitudes were different, through a survey (N=300) of Chinese students in these two countries. The survey determined how they used social media, their attitudes and whether they trust social media advertising. It also tested the relationships between the students’ the Social Media Diets (amount, frequency, and duration) and attitude toward social media advertising.

Marketing of Separatist Groups: Classification on Separatist Movement Categories • Dwiyatna Widinugraha • Many articles and studies discussed ISIS as a separatist group from its home country. However when we looked at other separatist cases, such as the Scottish Independence (SI) case, problems occurred when we tried to classified ISIS and SI in the same groups of separatists. This study uses comparative analysis on separatist groups marketing activities to draw classifications on the 21st century separatist groups categories: the ethnic group, the political group and the terrorist group.

Riot Bias: A Textual Analysis of Pussy Riot’s Coverage in Russian and American Media • Kari Williams, SIUE/TH Media • This study uses framing theory and textual analysis to investigate how American and Russian media portrayed Russian punk band Pussy Riot’s 2012 protest act in a Moscow cathedral, the trial and sentencing and subsequent newsworthy events. Coverage from Russia’s Pravda and the United States’ The New York Times – beginning with this particular protest act (February 2012) and ending with the protest at the Sochi Olympics (February 2014) –shows how each country’s media portrayed the band.

Inter-media agenda-setting across borders: Examining newspaper coverage of MH370 incident by media in the U.S., China, and Hong Kong • Fang Wu, The Chinese University of Hong Kong; Di Cui, The Chinese University of Hong Kong • Focusing on the media coverage of the mysterious disappearance of Flight MH370 by major newspapers in the U.S., China, and Hong Kong, this study explored the inter-media agenda-setting effect in transnational settings. A content analysis of related news articles revealed a two-step agenda-setting effect among the selected news media. The findings suggested the national power (under which news media operate) played an important role in shaping the agenda of the coverage of global media events.

2015 Abstracts

History 2015 Abstracts

Point-Counterpoint: The Debate that Embodied a Decade • Elizabeth Atwood, Hood College • Point-Counterpoint, 60 Minutes’ much-parodied debate between Shana Alexander and James Jackson Kilpatrick, became a cultural icon, not because of the arguments presented but because the two commentators embodied the battle of the sexes that was at the forefront of social thought in the 1970s. The unlikely creative force behind the segment was Kilpatrick, the print journalism veteran, who possessed an innate understanding of the entertainment quality of television news.

Assault on the Ivory Tower: Anti-Intellectualism in Coverage of the Hutchins Commission • Stephen Bates • When thirteen intellectuals criticized its performance in 1947, the American press on the whole responded ungraciously. Journalists derided the Commission on Freedom of the Press, commonly called the Hutchins Commission, as an assemblage of professors whose analysis was tainted by self-dealing, irresponsibility, elitism, and impracticality. At a broad level, critics charged that the Commission’s work was shaped by its members’ status as professors. By weighing the news coverage against the Commission’s unpublished documents, this paper finds significant validity in the media’s broad contention: An ivory tower world view ran through the Commission’s proceedings and recommendations.

Yabba Dabba Don’t Forget Your Audience: What The Simpsons Learned from The Flintstones’ Third Season • Jared Browsh, University of Colorado-Boulder • The Simpsons and The Flintstones are irrevocably linked in television history as two of the first successful primetime animated programs. However, after their initial successes, both programs reached a crossroads after the second season concerning the direction of each series. This paper examines the third season of each program to better understand how decisions made by creators, and the networks broadcasting the shows, led to very different outcomes for these two historically significant programs.

Bubbling Motor of Money: Calvin Jacox, the Norfolk Pilot & Guide, and the integration of Tidewater baseball • Brian Carroll, Berry College • This paper seeks to reveal, examine, and understand the role of black sportswriter Cal Jacox in chronicling and promoting baseball’s integration in the Tidewater (Va.) region in the 1950s. For a quarter-century the sports editor for the Norfolk Journal & Guide, Jacox proved a crusader in the fight against discrimination, writing about and helping to foster Black sports and athletes before, during and after integration, to quote his plaque at the Virginia Sports Hall of Fame & Museum.

Frances Buss, Television’s Playgirl: The Groundbreaking Career and Divergent Receptions of Television’s First Female Director • Mike Conway, Indiana University; Alexandra B. Hitchcock • American television’s first female director, Frances Buss, received considerable attention during the medium’s chaotic early years. First portrayed as the pretty girl behind the camera, Buss later became a symbol for pushing through failure and forging her own path in the male dominated world of television technology. Buss’s career provides texture and illumination into the overall image of Rosie the Riveter and the changing work environment for women before, during, and after World War II.

El Gringo, Travel Writing, and Colonization of the Southwest: W. W. H. Davis’ Journalism in New Mexico • Michael Fuhlhage, Wayne State University • This paper reveals the ways Doylestown Democrat correspondent W. W. H. Davis portrayed the newly conquered people of New Mexico for readers in the Eastern United States in his newspaper correspondence and book El Gringo. The study juxtaposes published journalistic travel writing in the early 1850s with his private, confidential writing in letters and journals to assess the interaction between Davis’ social identity, intentions, and journalistic products.

Framing Mexicans in Great Depression Editorials: Riff-Raff to Heroes • Melita Garza, Texas Christian University, Bob Schieffer College of Communication, School of Journalism • This research explores the way three competing daily newspapers in San Antonio, Texas, opined about immigrants during the deep financial crisis of the early Depression years. San Antonio’s independent English-language Express; the Hearst-owned, Light; and the immigrant-owned Spanish-language La Prensa, offered widely divergent conceptions of the American newcomer. Using framing theory, the author identified how early 1930s San Antonio newspapers defined immigration in ways that persist in the national imagination.

Being the Newspaper: Ontological Metaphors and Metonymy at the End of the Newspaper, 1974-1998 • Nicholas Gilewicz, Annenberg School for Communication, University of Pennsylvania • This article analyzes final editions of ten newspapers that closed between 1974 and 1998, during the early phase of ongoing crises facing the newspaper industry. Journalists at these newspapers used the same set of nested metaphors and symbolic metonymy to discuss social and historical roles of their newspapers. Such consistency reinforced newspaper journalists’ tight discursive community and highlighted journalists’ self-proclaimed role as courageous representatives of their communities while hiding the industrial apparatus of the newspaper.

The defeat is a total one!: East German Press Coverage of America’s Space Setbacks • Kevin Grieves, Whitworth University • The Cold War found dramatic expression in the U.S.-Soviet Space Race. The Cold War ideological struggle also played out primarily via the mass media, in particular when journalists covered the successes and setbacks of space missions. This study examines East German press coverage of prominent American space failures from 1957 to 1986, drawing on newly digitized archival holdings. Citing specific cases, the analysis illuminates patterns of propaganda approaches and journalistic techniques.

A short history of the journalistic profile • Grant Hannis • Despite profiles’ contemporary popularity, there has been little scholarly analysis of their historical development. This paper seeks to address this, offering a critical review of a selection of profiles beginning from the earliest days of print journalism. Many of the early profiles give us no sense of actually meeting the person profiled, but throughout history nearly all profiles judge those profiled. We can see in many profiles how reporters create a reality to serve their journalistic needs.

Now We Move to Further Action: The Story of the Notre Dame Sunday Morning Replays • Daniel Haygood, Elon University • From 1959 through 1984, Notre Dame football enjoyed a unique national television presence in college sports. The NCAA limited the amount of games broadcast live and had exclusive rights to negotiations with the television networks. But Notre Dame found a loophole for delayed broadcasts. This research reveals the story behind these Sunday morning replays, the key individuals involved, the elaborate production process, and why they were eventually were taken off the air after 26 years.

The Fish Sticks Logo: The Doomed Rebranding of the New York Islanders • Nicholas Hirshon, Ohio University • Sophisticated conversations about sports logos began in the 1990s. A notable example is the ill-fated rebranding of the National Hockey League’s New York Islanders in 1995. The Islanders unveiled one of the most vilified logos in sports history, depicting a cartoon fisherman clutching a hockey stick. This paper reveals the thought process behind the rebranding campaign through a review of period newspaper articles and oral history interviews with the logo’s designers and former Islanders executives.

Illinois Governor Otto Kerner: A Well-liked, Respected Media Critic • Thomas Hrach, University of Memphis • Illinois Governor Otto Kerner is best known in history as chair of the 1968 National Advisory Commission on Civil Disorders, which was better known as the Kerner Commission. The commission’s report focused on the riots of the mid-1960s, but it was an important document in journalism history for its pointed criticism of the news media. While much of the recommendations in the Kerner Report were dismissed and never implemented, the chapter on the news media was the exception. It became a catalyst for change in journalism by encouraging the increased coverage of African-Americans in the news media and prodding the news business to hire more minorities to report the news. The Kerner Reports media criticism was taken seriously by the journalism community because Kerner was such a well-liked and respected person with the news media. Kerner actively cultivated the news media and kept them informed about his activities and the activities of the commission. Even after his conviction and prison sentence on corruption charges while governor, Kerner remained a respected person with the news media until the day he died.

Editor, Booster, Citizen, Socialist: Victor L. Berger and His Milwaukee Leader • James Kates, University of Wisconsin-Whitewater • From 1911 to 1929, Victor Berger edited the Milwaukee Leader, a Socialist daily newspaper. Berger advocated a peaceful transition to socialism via the ballot box. When the Leader opposed World War I, it lost its mailing privileges and Berger faced prison. This paper examines the daily operations of the Leader and Berger’s belief that a free press was crucial in fostering socialism. It argues that Berger’s temperament and his booster ethos were unsuited to the capital-intensive world of daily newspapering in the 1920s.

Clearing a Path for Television News: The First Long-Form Newscast at Sacramento’s KCRA • Madeleine Liseblad, Arizona State University • The advent of long-form television news was a turning point for television. Starting in the 1970s, scholars have associated long-form television news with the first half-hour network newscasts. However, long-format news was driven by local television stations, not the networks. This paper examines in-depth the previously virtually ignored first long-form newscast in the nation – KCRA’s Channel 3 Reports – launched in Sacramento on February 20, 1961 at 6 p.m

Exploring The Hero Archetype and Frontier Myth in the Ad Council’s Peace Corps Campaign, 1961 – 1970 • Wendy Melillo, American University • The hero archetype and frontier myth are embedded in the Ad Council’s Peace Corps Campaign. Advertisers use stories with universal appeal to sell products and services. The Ad Council, under the guise of public service, helped the U.S. government fight Communism with messages that encouraged Americans to join the Foreign Service and defend America’s democratic values in a glorious adventure in the Third World.

The Lee Family and Freedom of the Press in Virginia • Roger Mellen, New Mexico State University • The free press clause in the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution is considered a unique and important part of our American democracy. While the origins of this right are a key to current legal interpretations, there is much misunderstanding about its genesis. This research uses eighteenth-century personal correspondence, published articles, and other archival evidence to demonstrate new connections between the Lee family of Virginia and the constitutional right to a free press.

Saving the Republic: An Editor’s Crusade against Integration • Gwyneth Mellinger, Xavier University • Abstract: Thomas Waring Jr., editor of The News and Courier in Charleston, S.C., offers a case study for segregationist fears of integration and communism in the late 1950s. This paper explores Waring’s campaign, in both editorials and news reporting, against Highlander Folk School and his alma mater, the University of the South, and in defense of a segregationist conception of white democracy.

The Artist as Reporter: Drawing National Identity During the U.S. Civil War • Jennifer Moore, University of Maine • The illustrated press reached a highpoint during the U.S. Civil War. Artists hired as illustrators sketched battles scenes and other war-related imagery for a public eager for news and information. In doing so, pictorial news communicated information that words alone could not. This study interprets pictorials reports on the war vis-à-vis a paradigm shift that reflected more realistic reporting practices. Findings describe how illustrations communicated certain ideologies about nationalism and national identity through flag iconography.

Charles Siepmann: A Forgotten Pioneer of Critical Media Policy Research • Victor Pickard • The contributions of Charles Siepmann (1899-1985), a British-born, American-naturalized media scholar and progressive policy advocate should figure centrally within any revisionist history of the field of communication. Siepmann is a prime example of an early critical thread of communication research: overtly political in his scholarship and frequently engaged with media policy interventions. He was a seminal figure in the early days of the BBC, the primary author of the controversial FCC Blue Book, and also the founding director of one of the United States’ first graduate-level communication programs in 1946 where he taught for over two decades. Siepmann mentored a number of leading broadcast historians and practitioners and authored several influential books, but he was first and foremost a public intellectual of a social democratic orientation, engaging with important policy debates across three countries. Given his historical significance, Siepmann’s legacy deserves closer scholarly attention—as does his continued relevance, particularly within debates about the future of public media. Drawing from Siepmann’s writings, archival materials, and interviews with his former students, this paper situates his scholarship within historical and contemporary contexts by examining his role during the early years of communication scholarship and his participation in significant media policy debates.

The Platform: How Pullman Porters Used Railways to Engage in Networked Journalism • Allissa Richardson, Graduate Student & Lecturer • This essay re-frames the early 20th-century news partnerships of Pullman porters and African-American newspapers as an example of networked journalism that functioned efficiently for decades, well before the Information Age. The Pullman porters and African-American newspapers used the railways as an antecedent to computerized social networks to achieve modern notions of information crowdsourcing and collaborative news editing, which helped shape and convey black political thought after World War I.

Nineteenth Century Women’s Dress Reform: Representations of the Bloomer Costume in North Carolina Newspaper Coverage • Natalee Seely • The bloomer costume came to represent the women’s rights movement in the nineteenth century. Despite claims from North Carolina newspapers that the state was open to dress reform, a textual analysis of North Carolina newspaper coverage found the bloomer dress was typically portrayed negatively for a variety of reasons. Some voices endorsed the bloomer dress for its practicality and comfort, and the outfit was sometimes explicitly linked to the principles of the women’s rights movement.

Here we go again: Seven Decades of Debate But Still No Agreement Over How to Define Violence • Margot Susca, American University • Over the last seven decades, researchers, politicians, and parents have struggled with how to study, regulate, and monitor media violence. Thousands of articles devoted to media violence have been published, the Supreme Court has heard arguments on the constitutionality of laws banning violent material, and legislators and government regulatory agencies have attempted to quantify media effects while weighing how—if at all—to regulate media violence. But what is media violence? The lack of a standard definition leaves in its wake major contemporary issues related to media ratings, local governance, and regulatory policy yet little academic research has studied the history of the debate or its implications for policymakers, parents, researchers. This paper provides a historical analysis of social science and governmental definitions of media violence to help better understand the current issues impacting regulators attempting to find a standardized definition.

A Riot ‘Never Out of Control’: World War II Press, Bamber Bridge, and Collective Memory • Pamela Walck, Ohio University • What began with American GIs trying to get more drinks at Ye Olde Hob Inn, escalated into a racial firefight between white and African American troops on the streets of Bamber Bridge, a small British village in Northwest England. The incident, just a few days after the race riots in Detroit, made headlines in the British and American press, while U.S. military officials attempted to control the story narrative. Along the way, the Battle for Bamber Bridge has forged itself into the collective memory of the village and the region’s citizens even decades later. This paper examines media reports of the riot, government documents, and oral histories to understand how media influence collective memory.

A Strong Sense of Outrage: Stan Strachan, The National Thrift News and The Savings and Loan Crisis • Rob Wells, University of Maryland • This paper examines how a small mortgage industry newspaper, the National Thrift News, defied the trade press norms and served as an aggressive industry watchdog. It first reported on the 1987 Keating Five scandal, an iconic political money story where five U.S. Senators pressured regulators to go easy on a wealthy campaign contributor. The National Thrift News excelled at a time when mainstream media offered lackluster coverage of the savings and loan financial crisis.

2015 Abstracts

Electronic News 2015 Abstracts

“Erosion” of Television City Hall Reporting? Perceptions of Reporters on the 2014 Beat • Daniel Riffe, University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill; Jesse Abdenour, University of Oregon • Mail survey (N=112) of lead city government reporters at randomly selected stations in the 210 local DMAs replicates a 1997 study. The 2014 reporters had a more pessimistic view of station commitment to and valuing of city government reporting than in 1997 study. Among 2014 respondents, older reporters were more pessimistic while smaller market reporters were more optimistic, and a majority believes media commitment to covering city government remains generally strong.

A Survey of Social Media Policies in U.S. Television Newsrooms • Anthony Adornato, Ithaca College; Suzanne Lysak • The use of social media by journalists raises new ethical and professional dilemmas. As a result, news outlets are implementing policies addressing what is and what is not permitted on social media platforms. Through a nationwide survey of local television news directors, this study examines the prevalence of social media policies in TV newsrooms, the source of those policies, and how they are implemented. This study also investigates if and how the policies address emerging matters related to five specific areas: personal and professional social media activity of reporters, social media sourcing and content, audience complaints on social media, use of social media while reporting in the field, and ownership of social media accounts.

User-generated Content and Television News Stations • Eva Buchman; Rita Colistra; Kevin Duvall • With the technological growth our society has experienced over the last several years, user-generated content has become a popular way for television stations to gather news. This relationship was investigated through a national online survey of news directors/executive producers at television stations. This study explores news directors’ perceptions of user-generated content, and how those perceptions shape policies regarding this type of content. By understanding if, or how, television stations incorporate user-generated content into their newscasts, it will help to define and to understand how perceptions shape newsroom policies regarding this type of content’s use. This study investigates how user-generated content is integrated into a television broadcast as well as what types are most often used. This research also seeks to learn if there is a standard policy that is used by television stations, and how and why this type of content is integrated into television news broadcasts.

Medium Matters – Examining Television, Newspaper and Online News Definitions on Facebook and Twitter • Jennifer Cox • More news organizations have begun to emphasize social media as a means of distributing news. Television, newspaper, and online-only organizations have traditionally defined news differently from one another, yet little research has addressed whether those differences have carried over to their social media offerings. A content analysis of 1,232 Facebook and Twitter posts revealed differences among the three organization types, indicating those publications are continuing to differ their content from one another on social media.

Microblogging the news: Who sets the agenda? • Dmitri Diakov, Graduate Student; Valerie Barker, SDSU • A content analysis was conducted on a sample (N = 600) of reddit front-page posts; in an attempt to determine how frequently mainstream news media uses it as a source. Reddit’s unique voting structure and abundance of UGC and citizen journalism, makes it a great starting point for a glimpse at the reverse agenda setting concept. The findings indicate that there is indeed a relationship between reddit news and mainstream media news.

Media personality Projection in the Digital Age: Revisiting Parasocial Interaction and Local Television News • Ashley Gimbal, Arizona State University • “Parasocial interaction has been widely studied since its development in the 1950s, but little has been investigated in recent years. With the immense changes local television news has gone through in recent years, there is a vital importance to understanding the role of the on-camera persona (anchor) in relation to the impact they may have on viewers. Here, a telephone survey in the Phoenix Metropolitan area was conducted to measure parasocial interactions among local television news viewers. The parasocial framework developed by Rubin (1985) was used to measure viewer responses. Findings of the study indicate a decrease in measurable levels of parasocial interaction from previous studies, but also found strong correlation between news ratings and parasocial interaction.”

“Good B-Roll for the Scissor Makers Museum” • Desiree Hill, University of Oklahoma • In a time when anyone with a camera phone can become a video content creator, the concept of storytelling takes on a meaning that goes beyond the purview of professional video workers. This study is a textual analysis of how professional videographers in a Facebook group discuss the meaning of story. The videographers use a widely-viewed video as a common element for their discussion. Bormann’s (1972) symbolic convergence theory is used to understand how individuals create and share stories together. Common themes emerge from the video workers about what is required for video storytelling: character, feeling/emotion, and story construction. The storytellers reveal that story is not about the quality of the video, nor the quality of the topic at hand. It is what occurs by the hand of the storyteller.

Citizen Journalists’ Views on Traditional Notions of Journalism, Story Sourcing, and Relationship Building • Kirsten Johnson, Elizabethtown College; Burton St. John, Old Dominion University • This study examines whether citizen journalists adhere to traditional journalistic norms when reporting. A nationwide survey of U.S. citizen journalists showed they do consider norms such as objectivity, gatekeeping, and balance to be important. This study also found that citizen journalists who have previous traditional newsroom experience don’t adhere any more tightly to traditional journalistic norms when reporting, than those citizen journalists who have no prior traditional newsroom experience.

How Arousing Features Affect TV News Preferences and Recognition among Young Viewers • Mariska Kleemans; Paul Hendriks Vettehen; Rob Eisinga; Hans Beentjes; Luuk Janssen • This study experimentally investigates whether content (arousing versus non-arousing) and packaging (tabloid versus standard) of television news stories influence preferences for and recognition of these stories among young viewers, varying in educational level. Results showed that the use of arousing news features may help news producers to provide young viewers with news. However, this holds for content but not for packaging. In addition, arousing content improved recognition, but only among higher educated young viewers.

Polarized or parallel? Partisan news, cable news, and broadcast news agendas • Patrick Meirick, University of Oklahoma; Jill A. Edy, University of Oklahoma; Jacqueline Eckstein • Data on news content collected by Pew (2007-2012) reveals the issue agendas of broadcast news networks are indistinguishable from each other. While cable news agendas are more distinctive, their overlap with broadcast news agendas and each other is considerable, although cable news is less diverse and does not increase the television news agenda’s overall diversity. Results suggest political polarization occurs within a broadly shared issue agenda and thus is less fundamental than it might be.

Second Screen Outcomes: Social Capital Affinity and Flow as Knowledge Gain Predictors Among Multiscreening Audiences • Rebecca Nee, San Diego State University; Valerie Barker, SDSU; David Dozier • Complementary simultaneous media use occurs when television viewers use another screen to seek information or communicate about television content. This online survey (N = 645) assessed social capital affinity and flow as potential mediators in the relationships between social vs. information-seeking motives for second screen use and focused and incidental knowledge gain. Findings confirm that social capital affinity and flow act as mediators, with flow being the more potent of the two in this multiplatform context.

Local Television Newsgathering Models: Are Two Heads Better than One? • Simon Perez; Michael Cremedas • This research focuses on whether the trend toward using one person (MMJ) to report, shoot and edit the news versus the traditional method using a two-person crew affects the quality of television journalism. The study’s results suggest, in some instances, two-person crews are far superior to MMJs; in other areas, MMJs seem capable of approximating the quality of the work done by two-person crews.

Evaluating Issue-Oriented Video Journalism Techniques • Richard Schaefer, Univ. of New Mexico; Natalia Jácquez, Univ. of New Mexico • Measures of cognitive retention and evoked empathy were tested across three video journalism stories dealing with trend data conveyed by continuity, thematic montage, and infographic visual treatments. The infographic and montage techniques proved more effective for communicating the complex dimensions of the trend data, with infographics creating the most self-reported empathy in viewers. The results suggest that graphic visualizations, which are easily produced with digital programs, could best communicate complex social trends.

Staying Alive: T.V. News Facebook Posts, Perceived Credibility and Engagement Intent • Kate Keib, University of Georgia; Bartosz Wojdynski, University of Georgia • The public’s perceptions of media credibility have long been rooted in notions of trust, believability and expertise. With news coming at audiences not only through intentional browsing, but also via social media, and with the array of digital news sources growing ever broader, understanding how users make decisions about the credibility of media sources is relevant to both academic researchers and media organizations. This study examines how characteristics of Facebook posts promoting television news stories trigger heuristic cues previously shown to help online content consumers make decisions about credibility. A 2 (likes, shares and comments: low vs. high) x 2 (sponsorship: liked brand vs suggested post) x 3 (post source: peer vs. brand vs. journalist) online experiment was conducted to see how participants judged the credibility of Facebook posts with various manipulations of cues. Participants were US adults (mean age 35.7) who use Facebook. Results indicate that user’s actions do not always match the assumed actions traditional heuristic cues would predict. Results can be used by scholars studying credibility and by news brands and journalists to increase credibility and engage audiences on Facebook.

2015 Abstracts