A Bigger Footprint: Religion Coverage by Another Name • Jesse Holcomb, Pew Project for Excellence in Journalism • A content analysis of significant religion stories in recent years suggests that the presence of religion in the news is broader than previously thought. However, in some cases, events with religious significance were primarily covered by journalists as politics, crime, or terrorism stories. The findings point to a journalistic landscape in which religion and other beats are not neatly segregated, but reflect the connectivity of the 21st century public sphere in which we all live.
As Predicted: Fact and Improbability in News Coverage of Astrology • Rick Moore, Boise State University • This study examines a recent eruption of news about astrology. It uses as a lens research on how traditional news values might allow “mystical” ideas to maintain public acceptance in spite of scientific evidence against them. Contrasting that approach with a lens provided by Neil Postman, the current study finds reporting about astrology did not provide significant scientific basis for dismissal of the belief. The two lenses for discussing this provide very different insights, however.
Assuaging Death and Assigning Blame: A Lyric Analysis of Mormon Murder Ballads • Clark Callahan, Brigham Young University; Quint Randle, BYU • This paper uses Fisher’s narrative approach as a theoretical foundation for deconstructing 19th century Mormon culture through the use of its ballads. Specifically, this paper investigates Mormon and non-Mormon lyrical representations of murder (killing), “Mormon Murder Ballads.” This mode of cultural expression was especially relevant during the first 20 or so years of the church which was marked by both individual and group killings and persecution. Using narrative criticism, each of the selected songs was coded for themes—four main themes were identified in the analysis. These themes are blood and gore, broken promises of America, heavenly justice and vengeance, and rational perspective. These four theme offer insights into the social structures in which violent acts were contextually situated and how persecution was symbolized by 19th-century Mormons.
Coverage of Islam in the Egyptian Press • Gregory Perreault, Washington Journalism Center • This study investigates how Islam is covered by English-language Egyptian media. In past research, Arab media scholars have noted that Arab media, examined as a whole, is problematic to draw conclusions from because of it’s complex, varied nature. It is more effective to look at the environment with a more localized, media-specific approach. And existing English-language research on the coverage of Islam is mainly centered on Western media coverage of Islam. Little or no English research exists which examines how Egyptian media professionals and bloggers cover Islam, the major religion of Egypt. In this study, data will be gathered to help fill in this important gap in research with a very specific medium, country and language. In this study, conducted the year before Mubarak resigned, a news framing content analysis examines articles related to Islam in English-language Egyptian news sources Al Ahram Weekly, Daily News Egypt and Al-Masry Al-Youm over a three month period to determine how discussions of Islam are framed in coverage. Interviews performed with journalists who work in Egyptian English news media help discern the motivations and influences that affect coverage of Islam.
Cultivating, or alleviating, fear? How religion and media influence feelings about terrorism • Rosemary Pennington, Indiana University; Ammina Kothari, School of Journalism – Indiana University; Stacie Meihaus Jankowski; Jae Kook Lee • It has been almost ten years since the September 11th terrorist attacks. Religion played a pivotal role in the recovery of many people who witnesses the attacks; news media covered the event thoroughly and has been covering terrorism-related stories since. This study examined how both religiosity and media use influence feelings about terrorism. It found only a positive relationship between newspaper readership and fear of terrorism.
Marketing Religion Online: The LDS Church’s SEO Efforts • Chiung Hwang Chen, Brigham Young University Hawaii • This paper examines the relationship between new media technologies and religious marketing. Specifically, it looks at how the LDS/Mormon Church employs Search Engine Optimization (SEO) techniques to influence online search results. The paper acknowledges the reasonable motivations behind and the ethical practice of the LDS Church’s SEO efforts; however, it also brings up philosophical questions about religions applying proactive/aggressive business marketing strategies.
Perceptions of Media Trust and Credibility amongst Mormon College Students • Guy J. Golan, Syracuse University; Sherry Baker, Brigham Young University • Based on a wide body of media credibility research, the current study explores media credibility perceptions amongst a highly conservative and religious sample. A survey of Brigham Young University students reveals low assessments of media credibility across platform and specific news sources. The study point to higher assessments of traditional news sources over broadcast news sources. In addition, the study identifies participants concern over the potential of the mainstream news media to mislead individual from within and without the Mormon community. We discuss the theoretical and practical implications of our study and call for future research to further investigate the complex relationship between media credibility and religion.
Religion, Affect and Cognition in Listener Contributions to NPR’s Talk of the Nation: Before, During and After 9/11. • Anna Turner; William Kinnally, University of Central Florida • Broadcast media often provide forums for public expression. This exploratory study sought to examine broadcast content to find support for Marx’s notion that religion is used as a tool to reduce suffering during a time of public crisis. Additionally, the project looked beyond the notion of religion to examine how affective and cognitive expressions evident in broadcasts of public’s voices differ in times of crisis. Public contributions to Talk of the Nation, a nationally broadcast, call-in talk show were analyzed using linguistic inquiry and word count software (LIWC). This longitudinal analysis included three week-long periods in the years before, during, and after 9/11. No differences were observed for expressions of religion or expressions of positivity. However, differences in expressions of negativity and cognitive processes were observed.
Secular and Religious Press Framing of the Uganda Anti-Homosexuality Bill • Dave Ferman, University of Oklahoma • This study examines the differences in frames used by major American secular and religious publications in describing the controversy over the role American evangelists played in a bill introduced in the Ugandan parliament in October 2009 that would include the death penalty for some homosexuals. Fame analysis is also applied to study how the publications employed the hypocrisy topos, one of seven topoi descried by Silk as used by journalists in writing about religion and religious leaders. The findings indicate extensive differences between secular and religious publications, both in how they framed the evangelists’ influence on the bill and homosexuality in Africa, and how they employed the hypocrisy topos when looking at the messages that the evangelists used both before and after the bill was introduced and became a major topic of news reports and public debate in America and around the world.
Seeking to understand interactivity in church websites • Matthew Broaddus • When people seek to express their faith it is now often online in a cyber faith setting. This quantitative study provides a brief summary of the trends facing modern churches in the U.S., presents literature on cyber interactivity and Diffusion of Innovation Theory, reviews previous academic research in the area of innovation adopted by churches, and presents the results of a content analysis conducted on church websites to understand what interactive features churches have adopted.
State and national media coverage of Oklahoma’s proposed constitutional amendment outlawing the consideration of Sharia law in court decisions • Joel Kendall, Southwestern Oklahoma State University • This study analyzes state and national media coverage during Oklahoma’s November 2010 election season on a state constitutional amendment designed to ban the use of Sharia law in state courts. This study analyzes the way the media handled coverage of the issue before and immediately following the election. It analyzes six months of print and broadcast coverage of the debate surrounding the state question leading up to the November election and the 10 days following the election. It studies to what extent state and national news organizations educated potential voters and framed the debate in terms of level of attention to the debate, favorable or unfavorable opinion of the amendment, and explanation of issues involved. The researcher concluded that the proposed amendment received sparse coverage by both state and national newspapers, and that reader-submitted opinions comprised most of the state coverage. Furthermore, state or national media offered little discussion or explanation on the concept of sharia law in any articles leading up to the election.
The Impact of Responsiveness and Conflict on Millennials’ Relationship with Religious Institutions • Richard Waters, North Carolina State University; Denise Bortree, Penn State University • Research continues to document a decline in the number of young adults affiliated to a religious institution; however, most measures of spiritual behavior indicate that Millennials reflect similar beliefs of previous generations. This study examines how institutional responsiveness and personal conflict with the religious institutions impact the relationship that Millennials have with organized religion. Through a survey of 284 young adults, this study found that Millennials evaluate their relationship with their religious institution favorably and that their involvement with religion can be predicted by how they evaluate this relationship. Additionally, structural equation modeling revealed that perceived personal conflict had a detrimental impact to the relationship while institutional responsiveness to Millennials helped restore the relationship.
The Second Level Agenda Setting Effect of News Coverage of Islam in American Newspapers • Brian J. Bowe, Michigan State University; Shahira Fahmy, University of Arizona; Wayne Wanta, Oklahoma State University • Second level agenda setting offers a way of demonstrating the effects of news content by providing evidence that the attributes emphasized in news coverage become more salient in the minds of media consumers and more influential in terms of actual effects on opinions and attitudes. This study examines the substantive and affective attributes of the religion of Islam in coverage of 18 U.S newspapers and compares those attributes with results of a Gallup Center for Muslim Studies’ poll to determine whether the coverage of Islam in the media influences perception, as second-level of agenda-setting suggests. Two hypotheses were tested, and the analysis of media coverage of attributes linked to the “object” of Islam and public perceptions of Islam suggests little support for attribute agenda-setting.
Educational Crusade or Product Masquerade? Exploring the Commercialization of Social Responsibility in America’s Healthcare Industry • Laura Crosswell, Louisiana State University • Aiming to uncover the societal implications of Merck Pharmaceutical’s recently launched, multi-phased social marketing health campaign, and intending to reveal the underlying variables of affective and conative consumer processing, this investigation leans on group discussion to more deeply examine the company’s HPV/GARDASIL campaign. By utilizing social trust theory, and reinforcing the philosophical model with contemporary social marketing research, this exploratory study employs focus group methodology to gauge the ways in which specific branding techniques influence viewers in their perceptions of and reactions to Merck’s health awareness messages. The analysis explores Merck’s HPV social marketing effort and the methods by which the health messages created demand for, and ultimately launched, the company’s HPV vaccination, GARDASIL. This study questions the ethical foundation of Merck’s campaign strategy, and in a broader sense, encourages a movement towards modernizing marketing research.
Industry Change and Programming Choice: Public Television in a Shifting Marketplace • Kelly Davis, UNC School of Journalism and Mass Communication • This study conducted a survey of programmers to examine the relationship between perceived organizational threat, organizational identity, workplace satisfaction and the perception of threat to the organization to determine which considerations may influence programming decisions for public television programmers. Results indicated that six main factors contribute to programming decisions, and that these are related to perceived threat to the organization, time spent in the organization, and perceived organizational prestige.
Freedom of the Press and the Pursuit of Happiness • Edson Jr. Tandoc, University of Missouri-Columbia; Heather Shoenberger • The press enjoys freedom in democratic societies in recognition of its important functions in democracy. A free press, however, also plays other roles that have not been sufficiently explored. The pursuit of happiness is a universal motivation and by looking across different countries, our current study seeks to answer this general question: Can press freedom bring happiness? This study used indices from various organizations that rate countries and territories based on levels of democracy, press freedom, corruption, global competitiveness, and life satisfaction. Countries that were excluded in at least three of the five indices were not included. Thus, a total of 177 countries were included in the analysis that found press freedom and corruption control as significant predictors of life satisfaction, a measure of happiness. The effects of press freedom on life satisfaction, however, are absorbed by its effects on deterring corruption.
Far from Home: How and why transnational audiences use mass media to visit homeland • Emily Ehmer, Indiana University • Transnationals use media to connect to home, but media also promote migrants’ assimilation into the host country’s culture. This study follows the media habits of adults who are ether international students or their spouses studying at a university. Availability and ease of connecting to the Internet are major factors in connecting with home. An interesting finding is the tension about a sense of belonging – a gray area that is not static but constantly changing.
Portrayal of the Iraqi Kurdistan Region in U.S. Newspapers • Goran Ghafour, Master student • The Iraqi Kurdistan region considers itself the closest ally of the United States in the Middle East. Therefore, to know how the U.S. newspapers portray the region is essential and more important is whether the portrayal reflects the U.S. foreign policies or not. A content analysis of articles in three U.S. newspapers from 2009 is conducted. Findings show that that news coverage reflected U.S. positions and policies about Iraq.
The Effects of Message Framing and Evidence in Anti-Binge Drinking Messages • Eun Go, Pennsylvania State University; Keun Yeong Kim • This study investigates the influence of framing (gain- and loss-framing), message evidence format (narrative evidence and statistical evidence), and their interaction effects on perceptual, attitudinal, and behavioral responses to binge drinking. The results show that gain-framed message increased message persuasiveness and consequently behavioral intention to responsible drinking. It also demonstrated the benefits of narrative evidence format in reducing undesirable drinking behaviors. In particular, the interaction effect of gain-loss and narrative-statistical conditions in the perceived persuasiveness of the message was found, showing that match of loss frame and narrative evidence maximized the persuasiveness of the message. This findings will help public health practitioners construct more sophisticated message to decrease college students’ alcohol consumption level.
Applications and Gratifications: Games and Genres in Apple’s App. Store • Kelly Cochran, University of Kansas; James Field, University of Kansas; Thomas Hardy, University of Kansas; Mark Shonka, University of Kansas; Laura A. Thomas, University of Kansas; Jia-Wei Tu, University of Kansas • Americans are increasingly exposed to gaming applications on their smart phones. The authors of this study investigated games in Apple’s App Store: its most popular games, their associated genres, and the factors that predict ranking. A content analysis showed that the ‘arcade’ genre dominated and that popularity correlates with the rating and number of reviews received. The uses and gratifications identified were competition, fantasy, and arousal. Findings will interest Internet researchers and application developers.
Just the facts, ma’am: A study of literary journalism courses in journalism and mass communications curricula • Jack Karlis, University of South Carolina • This study investigates the prevalence of literary journalism courses in undergraduate journalism and mass communication programs in the United States; to investigate the rationales for offering or not offering such courses in journalism programs; and to document and to explore the content and learning objectives of literary journalism courses already being taught. An electronic survey of ACEJMC schools and in-depth interviews of literary journalism scholars around the country for their best practices was used.
Framing the Direct-to-Consumer Genetic Testing Issue in the U.S. and British Print Media • Jihye Kim, Univ. of Florida • The purpose of this study was to examine the different frames within the news print media regarding DTC genetic testing, while comparing the different news frames in the United States and Great Britain. The study analyzed the differences of opinion concerning DTC genetic testing abilities. The comprehensive media framing analysis of newspaper reports was undertaken using the qualitative and quantitative analysis method. Six distinct frames were identified: legitimate, financial, political, ethical, health, and consequential.
Defamation on Today’s Internet: A Critical Assessment of Law and Self-Regulation on Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube • Mark Lashley, University of Georgia • Through a critical engagement with legislation, relevant case law, and legal literature on the subject of online defamation, as well as a critical appraisal of the procedures used by three major social networking platforms (Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube) to regulate defamatory and harassing speech, this paper seeks to unpack the ways courts and site administrators have handled defamatory speech online. By examining the social media apparatus from the inside out, this paper argues for a procedure that will protect the interest of personal reputation, clarify the potential liability of social networking sites, and outline the best practices for effective jurisprudence of defamation law in our online world.
Lights, Camera, Lesson: Teaching Literacy Through Film • Michael Lipiner • The in-depth case study explores a modern approach to education: the benefits of using film, technology, and other creative, non-conventional pedagogical methods in the classroom to enhance students’ understanding of literature. The study explores the positive effects of introducing a variety of visual (and auditory)-based teaching methods to learners within an urban high school English Language Arts inclusion classroom. The study group reads literature, analyzes films, and works on various creative assignments, such as incorporating music lyrics, using computer technology, and creating art. The study outlines supplemental assignments designed to have students respond critically to literature within a creative learning environment. As a result, the students’ grades improve, and they are able to stay connected with the readings. The case study also references similar professional case studies, authors, and educational theorists.
HIV/AIDS coverage in Chinese media: A case study of the ‘Girl with AIDS’ • Chen Lou, Ohio University • This case study considers the story of Zhu Liya, who went public as the alleged “”first”" HIV-positive college student in 2005 in China. First, Zhu’s exposure provided a rare example of Chinese media coverage and public discourse about HIV/AIDS patients. Second, this study builds upon the intergroup discrimination hypothesis from social identity theory to explain the prevalent discrimination against HIV/AIDS patients in China. The study also explored how Zhu used narratives to influence the public.
Making Sense of a Left-Field Success Story: Five Frames in Rolling Stone Coverage of Phish • Jordan McClain, Temple University • This paper uses framing research to examine all Rolling Stone magazine coverage of the band Phish. Through textual analysis, the aim is to enhance understanding of how media make sense of something that embodies an unconventional combination of features. The analysis revealed five frames: Phish as superlatively successful; Phish as an unconventional band; Phish as the subject of mockery; Phish in relation to various peers and/or successors; and Phish in relation to the Grateful Dead.
Exploring Surveilland and Socializing Gratifications from Streaming Network Television Shows in an On-demand age • Stephen McCreery, University of Georgia, The Grady College • This study applies a Uses and Gratifications conceptual framework to streaming network TV shows online, whereby how people use the Internet for gratifying certain needs are evolving. A survey of 274 students on their TV-streaming habits was conducted. Results suggest that both surveillance and social utility are gratified through interactive processes related to streaming entertainment programs. Implications for the television industry on interactive viewing, and directions for future studies, are discussed.
Media Portrayals of Mental Illness and the Third-Person Effect • Robert McKeever, UNC Chapel Hill • A survey was conducted to examine student views on mental illness, portrayals of mental illnesses in media and estimated effects of media depictions. Third-person perceptions were predictably strong when other students were the comparison group; however, perceived effects on self were larger than respondent estimations of media effects on their parents. The unexpected findings offer a unique contribution to third- and first-person research examining the influence of message desirability and comparison groups on perceived effects.
Contrasting For-profit and Nonprofit College Home Pages from a Political Economist Perspective • Nisa Schmitz, Southern Illinois University-Edwardsville • The oligopoly that nonprofit colleges once enjoyed is now over due to competition from for-profit colleges. Using a political economist perspective, this study contrasts the new for-profit college home pages to that of the veteran nonprofit colleges. A content analysis of 35 for-profit college home pages and 35 nonprofit college home pages reveals a range of significant differences in the areas of academics, target audience, campus information, financials, home page organization, imagery, and student life.
Newspaper hubris: Did hubris impact the industry’s’ decision not to charge for online news? • Amy Sindik, University of Georgia • This study examines if organizational hubris had a role in newspaper organizations’ decisions not to charge for online editions of the newspaper and belier that the online edition would not compete with, and cannibalize, the print newspaper product. By drawing on Hayward and Hambrick’s measures of hubris (1997) (organizational success, media praise, a measure of organizational importance and board vigilance), this study tested for hubris among the top one hundred newspapers at the advent of online newspapers editions. The study finds that organizational success, media praise and board vigilance indicated hubris and contributed to the decision not to charge for the online editions of newspapers, while a measure of organizational importance does not indicate hubris.
What do You Want from Corporate Blogs?: Motivations for Using Corporate Blogs • Doori Song, University of Florida; Joonghwa Lee, University of Missouri • Two studies were conducted to explore blog users’ motivations and their consequences. The factor analysis revealed five reasons that people visit and use corporate blogs. Additionally, this study compares the people’s initial motivations when they visit corporate blogs and users’ motivations for their corporate blog usages. Finally, the findings demonstrate that the motivations predict users’ attitudes toward the blog, usefulness of the blog, perceived interactivity (PI), and expected interactivity (EI).
An Empirical Study on How IPTV Affects Chinese Peasants’ Attitudinal Modernity • Nan Wu, Missouri School of Journalism; Hongbo Gao • The paper is designated to find out how IPTV use in rural China enhances peasants’ attitudinal modernity. With statistical analysis of survey data collected from rural IPTV users in a fourth-tier municipality of China, five hypotheses of the causal relationships between major factors in IPTV use and users’ attitudinal modernity are tested. The researchers identify that three factors, pragmatic function, remote technology performance and interactive application, play significant roles in promoting Chinese peasants’ attitudinal modernity.
How to Resolve Contradictory Health Messages? : An Alternative Message Framework for Public Service Announcement Developers • Ho-Young (Anthony) Ahn, U of Tennessee; Lei Wu; Eric Haley • A qualitative study was designed to explore college students’ interpretations of and responses toward conflicting tanning health messages, as well as understanding college students’ knowledge, experience, and perceptions toward the popular health issues. Practical implications were provided in terms of developing effective skin cancer prevention messages as well as tanning-promotion messages to help people build correct attitudes toward tanning.
Predicting Scientists’ Participation in Public Life • John Besley, University of South Carolina; Sang Hwa Oh, University of South Carolina • This manuscript provides secondary data analysis of two large-scale surveys of scientists, including a 2009 survey by the Pew Research Center for the People and the Press conducted in cooperation with the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), as well as a 2006 survey by the United Kingdom’s Royal Society. The data is used to develop multivariate models explaining scientists’ involvement in communication activities such as engagement with the public and the news media. Demographic factors and scientific sub-field has little impact on engagement, but views about the public and the value of engagement predict scientists’ engagement behavior and willingness to engage. Future survey work, however, should use a more theory-driven variable selection process.
Branding Health Communication Strategies Aimed at Healthcare Professionals • Patrick Merle; Robin Haislett; Dane Kiambi, Texas Tech University; Shannon Bichard, Texas Tech; Kat Livingston; Shankar Borua, Texas Tech University; Spencer Sorensen; Stephanie Kang; Trent Seltzer, Texas Tech University; Elizabeth Gardner, Texas Tech University; Coy Callison • The current study addresses the effort to brand new communication strategies among healthcare professionals. In-depth interviews and focus groups were conducted for the analysis of current communication barriers, message channels and sustainability tactics, and their influence on the patient experience. Strategies are offered to address effective communication training tactics and sustainability in an effort to maximize patient care and satisfaction.
Not in my backyard or yours: Communicative influences of opinion leadership on perceptions of risks and benefits of a bioresearch facility • Andrew Binder, North Carolina State University; Dietram Scheufele; Dominique BROSSARD, LSC, University of Wisconsin-Madison • This study builds on past research in the communication of science and risk by integrating models of attitude formation and learning with an important social factor: opinion leadership. We consider the role that opinion leadership can play in the flow of mass media and interpersonal communication to influence how individual-level risk and benefit perceptions of a potentially high-risk research facility evolve. In order to do so, we rely on primary data from a longitudinal study of the communication and public opinion dynamics surrounding the establishment of the National Bio- and Agro-Defense Facility (NBAF) in five candidate communities. The models tested in this study suggest a very flexible influence of opinion leadership in these different communities, in part moderated by the overarching social network—of supporters or opponents—within which they are embedded. Implications for future work on the public communication of science and technology are discussed.
How Global Warming Websites Frame Science Information • Lisa Parcell, Wichita State University; Michael Boyle, West Chester University • The global warming “debate” began as a pure science story, later framed by the media as a heated conflict. No longer solely reliant on the news media to present their “side” of the issue, special interests on both sides launched websites to inform and persuade visitors to their sites. However, these sites vary greatly in the extent to which they use science information, opinion, and other devices in framing global warming arguments. This study builds on science communication literature to examine 21 global warming websites and the specific nature and prominence of scientific information within the sites through a qualitative content analysis.
The impact of social context, warning components, and receiver characteristics on evacuation decisions of African Americans • Vankita Brown, Howard University • This study explores the situational influences found in the Protective Action Decision Model: family involvement (social context), source, channel, message components, (warning components), and fatalism and place attachment (receiver characteristics) on the protective action of African Americans in New Orleans during a hurricane. Additionally, the role of social networks among this community during these times was also assessed. Statistical analyses indicate that social context did not reveal a relationship with evacuation decisions. Public and governmental officials were found to be sources relied on during a hurricane. Both mass mediated and interpersonal communication channels were utilized among respondents, and all message components tested were important to participants. While fatalism was not correlated with evacuation decisions, place attachment was found to have an inverse relationship with willingness to evacuate. Thematic analysis reveals that social networks function as: a source of information and resources, confirmation of warnings, and catalyst to incite action. Results have implications for risk communicators utilizing PAMD as a framework to aid in devising outreach and educational campaigns.
Regulatory trust, risk information processing and support for an emerging technology • Michael Cacciatore, University of Wisconsin-Madison; Dietram Scheufele; Elizabeth Corley, Arizona St. University • Research investigating public attitudes toward nanotechnology has been primarily concerned with assessing the types of risks that the public perceives, as well as how these risks influence larger evaluations of the technology. Recently, however, there have been calls for a more complete understanding of the relationship between risk perceptions and support (Kahan, 2009). This analysis seeks to provide such an understanding by exploring the moderating effects of trust on the risk perception-attitude link. Our findings reveal that while risk perceptions are negatively related to support, the influence of specific risk perceptions on support can vary depending on an individual’s level of trust in the regulators of science. Specifically, our findings suggest two groups of people. The first group (those low in trust) are much more likely to base their decisions about support for nanotechnology on their perceptions of risks. That is, as their risk perceptions increase, their support decreases. The second group of people (those high in trust) are less likely to base their evaluations of nanotechnology on risk perceptions. While many of these individuals may agree that risks are high, their trust appears to override such beliefs and leads to a significantly smaller drop in support for the technology. Possible explanations for these findings are discussed.
Investigating the Role of Identities and Opinion Leadership on Risk Information Seeking and Sharing about Proposed Natural Gas Drilling in New York’s Marcellus Shale • Chris Clarke, Cornell University • This study investigates how identities motivate risk information seeking and sharing about risk controversies, using natural gas drilling in New York State’s Marcellus Shale as a case study. Thirty-six interviews explore the novel premise that an opinion leader identity and the contexts in which it emerges (including group membership and social roles) helps people negotiate a complex risk message environment and shapes communication behavior over time. Theoretical and practical implications are discussed.
Examining Metaphors in Biopolitical Discourse • Cynthia-Lou Coleman, Portland State University; L. David Ritchie • This essay argues that common metaphors and metaphoric phrases used in biopolitical discourse limit how meanings are constructed by framing messages narrowly: so much so, that alternate readings are delimited, resulting in less opportunity for cognitive scrutiny of such messages. We moor our discussion of metaphors in cognitive linguistics, building on three decades of research by scholars including Sam Glucksberg (2008), George Lakoff and Mark Johnson (1980, 1999), and Ray Gibbs, Jr. (2006, 2008), demonstrating how research in framing effects bolsters our claims of limited entailments resulting from message construction. By situating our discussion of framing in biopolitics we make a case that metaphors including Frankenfood, Designer Baby, Vegetative State and Death Tax address how life and death are “managed” in discourse (Foucault, 1980). In this essay we demonstrate ways in which the framing of some metaphors in social discourse slip under readers’ and viewers’ cognitive radars, and thus become “under-the-radar metaphors.”
Impacts of Generalized Interpersonal and Institutional Trust on Environmental Health and Safety Risk Information-Seeking • Christopher Cummings, North Carolina State University • Traditional models of risk communication need elaboration as the media landscape has fundamentally changed. Researchers should investigate not only how messages are disseminated, but also how the public seeks-out risk information within the increasingly complex media landscape. This paper investigates preliminary questions about citizens’ information-seeking behavior and the impacts of generalized interpersonal and institutional trust on media channel selection. Data are populated from a national survey study treating traditional broadcast media and Internet-based media.
The Goldilocks Zone of Science Communication: An analysis of how media depicted Gliese 581g • Michael Dahlstrom, Iowa State University; Michael Bugeja, Iowa State University • This study examines how the pre-existing meaning stored within “Goldilocks” was used in coverage of the discovery of a potentially habitable planet. Results of content analysis revealed that while “Goldilocks” was present in half of the articles, its use was rarely attributed. When compared to the technical name of the planetary system, “Goldilocks” was more clustered near the top of the story and its use remained constant over time while the technical term declined.
Following the leader: Using opinion leaders in environmental strategic communication • Kajsa Dalrymple; Bret Shaw; Dominique BROSSARD, LSC, University of Wisconsin-Madison • This study explores the role that opinion leaders play in encouraging more positive environmental behaviors regarding an issue of growing concern. Results indicate that media can have mixed effects on levels of self-efficacy, and that opinion leaders with higher levels of self-efficacy are more likely to participate in behaviors that could influence their social network(s). These findings offer insights as to how future campaigns can utilize these groups in order to promote prevention activities.
Consensus and Controversy: Climate Change Frames in Two Australian Newspapers • Jamie Nolan, University of Miami; Michel Dupagne, University of Miami • This content analysis evaluated the salience of climate change frames in news and opinion articles of two influential Australian newspapers with different editorial stances between 1997 and 2007. Results revealed that the scientific uncertainty frame appeared more frequently in the more conservative Australian than in the more liberal Age. But the scientific background, policy background, political strategy, and public engagement frames related to climate change were less prevalent in that newspaper than in The Age. The Australian’s climate change articles also relied less on the Australian government and environmental groups as news sources and were more negative in tone than those published in The Age.
Can eWOM Help Smokers Quit? Effects of Online Consumer Reviews of Smoking Cessation Products • Petya Eckler, University of Iowa • This study examines the psychological effects of electronic word of mouth (eWOM) about smoking cessation products on smokers through the Theory of Planned Behavior. The effects of three message features (valence, extremity, appeal) are tested on attitude toward quitting smoking and perceived behavioral control. Valence affected both dependent variables; extremity and appeal interacted to affect perceived behavioral control. Theoretical and practical implications for the study of eWOM in a health context are discussed.
Richard Dawkins: A critical case study of the celebrity scientist • Declan Fahy, School of Communication, American University, Washington, D.C • Celebrity is a pervasive cultural phenomenon, but compared to other professions, scientific fame has remained under-examined. This paper uses zoologist and writer Richard Dawkins as a critical case study to explore scientific celebrity, tracing the historical development and meanings of Dawkins’s fame, through his writing on evolution, his defense of scientific rationality and his current position as emblem of positivist, rational atheism. Celebrity offers a novel framework for analyzing the media representation of science.
Mediated Messages and Self-Efficacy: An Examination of Entertainment-Education, Junk Food commercials and Healthy Eating Habits • Anthony Galvez • According to the National Center for Health Statistics, the rate of obesity in the U.S. has doubled from 1980 to 2004. Because of the pervasiveness of television viewing in American households, it seems logical to implement healthy eating initiatives through television programming. The existing literature demonstrates the effectiveness of the entertainment-education model of message creation to educate audiences about a long list of prosocial issues. One question that remains unanswered is the following: Can the entertainment-education model succeed in industrialized nations where media choices are so varied that reaching target audiences becomes problematic? The purpose of the study was to test if a) exposure to a prosocial message would affect individual self-efficacy toward controlling eating and b) if exposure to junk food commercials would negate any effect of the prosocial message. A convenience sample of 139 college students from Mass Communications courses at a large southwestern university participated in a 2X2 factorial design experiment. Participants were randomly assigned to one of four treatment groups and asked to watch a 30-minute sitcom with half of the participants watching an entertainment-education type message about diet and exercise. Participants were also exposed to junk food advertisements in two of the treatment groups. Results indicated no difference in levels of self-efficacy between those groups exposed to the entertainment-education messages and junk food messages when compared to the control group, thus indicating a need to further evaluate how to develop a better strategy for entertainment-education in media saturated countries.
Exploring the effects of Anti-Alcohol Abuse Message Types on Rebellious College Students • Eun Go, Pennsylvania State University; Moon Lee, University of Florida • The purpose of this study was to examine the responses of college students who were exposed to anti-alcohol abuse messages (fear vs. humor) aimed at discouraging heavy drinking. Particularly, this study explores how college students process humorous and fear-arousing messages differently based on their rebellious tendency. A total of 302 people participated in this study. Results indicated that rebellious college students who watched the fear ads reported lower levels of intention to change their drinking behaviors than those who watched the humor ads. Theoretical as well as practical implications are discussed in the paper.
Message Framing and Vaccination Outcomes: A Within-messages Framing Manipulation Experiment • Rustam Haydarov, UNICEF; Joye Gordon, Kansas State University • This experimental research tested what combination of attribute and goal frames within messages produces the strongest effect on vaccination behavior. Participants (N=476) were exposed online to four experimental framing manipulations and a control condition. A combination of the positive attribute and the negative goal frame was the only condition significantly more persuasive than the control condition. This study contributes to the evidenced-based applicability of framing theory within the context of health communication activities.
Understanding H1N1 influenza with PIM model: A comparison on risk perceptions between the U.S. and China using structural equation modeling • Gang (Kevin) Han, Iowa State University; Kejun Chu; Guolin Shen • This study proposes a “personal-interpersonal-mass mediated” influence (PIM) model, aiming to understand how H1N1 flu risk at four reference levels (personal, group, societal and global) are perceived by college students living in the U.S. and China. The structural equation modeling is tested with the data collected from 1895 and 1441 completed online questionnaires. Findings suggest that the PIM model fits the data well, three dimensions of which are positively associated with respondents’ H1N1 risk perceptions at all levels. Personal disease history is the most powerful factor, showing relatively stronger influence on Chinese respondents than on U.S. respondents. Interpersonal communication exerts stronger influence at group and societal levels, and is a more powerful predictor to U.S. respondents. Mass communication illustrates ubiquitously significant effects on risk perceptions at all reference levels, which plays a more important role for Chinese respondents than for U.S. respondents. Mass-mediated experience has also been more influential than interpersonal communication for Chinese respondents to understand health risk in remote area at global level.
Motivated Reasoning, Identity Cues, and Support for Climate Mitigation Policies a Moderated-Mediation Model • Philip Hart, American University; Erik Nisbet, Ohio State University • This study draws from theories of motivated reasoning, social identity, and persuasion to examine how science-based messages may increase public polarization on controversial science issues such as climate change. Exposing 240 adults to simulated news stories about possible climate change health impacts on different groups, we find that political affiliation interacts with social distance cues to influence identification with victims, which in turn impacts support for climate mitigation policies. Implications for science communication are discussed.
Newspaper coverage of Shaken Baby Syndrome, 1992-2008 • Heidi Hennink-Kaminski, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill; Elizabeth Dougall • This longitudinal content analysis examines whether news media coverage of shaken baby syndrome aligns with contemporary scientific knowledge about its context, incidence and consequences. A quantitative content analysis of 1,167 newspaper articles about shaken baby syndrome from 1992 to 2008 published in top U.S. newspapers was conducted. Variables of interest included mention of “infant crying” or “colic” in relation to shaking, mention of early infant crying as normal, the consequences of shaking, victim/perpetrator portrayals, and types of sources. SBS is typified in ways that are at odds with contemporary scientific knowledge of its context and consequences. Most newspaper coverage provides no explanation of triggers such as crying, and positions the abuse as unpredictable and unpreventable.
Understanding Recycling Behaviors: A Theoretical Expansion of the Influence of Presumed Media Influence Model • Youqing Liao; Yanyi Yang; Titus J. Yong; Shirley S. Ho • This paper presents a theoretical framework to explain the influence of individuals’ attention to pro-environmental media messages on their recycling intentions. Building on the influence of presumed media influence (IPMI) model, we examine both direct and indirect media effects on recycling intentions and integrate the constructs of attitudes, descriptive, subjective, and injunctive norms into the model. We tested this framework on a random sample of 1,144 Singaporeans using computer-assisted telephone interviewing. Using structural equation modeling, we found evidence of IPMI on recycling intentions, in addition to direct media effects on attitudes, norms and recycling intentions. As expected, perceived media influence on others affected one’s recycling intentions. This relationship was further accounted for by three mediating constructs: attitudes, descriptive, and subjective norms. Injunctive norms, however, did not serve as a mediator. Implications and limitations of the findings were discussed.
The Blame Frame: Media attribution of blame during the MMR-autism vaccination scare • Avery Holton, University of Texas-Austin; Brooke Weberling, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill; Chris Clarke, Cornell University; Michael Smith, University of Louisville • Scholars have examined how news media frame events, including responsibility for causing and fixing problems and how these frames inform public judgment. This study analyzed the content of 281 newspaper articles about a controversial study linking the measles, mumps, and rubella (MMR) vaccination with autism. Given criticism of the study as well as its negative impact on vaccination rates across multiple countries, this study examined the actors to whom news media attributed blame for the association between the MMR vaccination and autism, what sources were employed to support those attributions, and what solutions, if any, were offered. This study provides unique insight by examining the evolution of these attributions over the lifetime of the MMR-autism controversy. Theoretical and practical implications of these findings are discussed.
News Coverage of Psychological Trauma and Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD): Trauma Causes, Reactions, and Treatment • J. Brian Houston, University of Missouri • In order to understand how psychological trauma and PTSD are depicted in the news media, a content analysis of television news and newspapers was conducted. Results found that news depictions of psychological trauma were more likely to focus on “trauma” in general than on “PTSD.” Almost all trauma news stories (98.2%) described the cause of the trauma. The most common cause of trauma in news stories was military service, which was mostly related to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Most trauma news stories did not mention a trauma reaction (64%) or a type of trauma treatment (69%). Committing murder/homicide was the most frequent trauma reaction overall. On average, trauma news stories were more episodic than thematic and there were significant differences in the episodic and thematic framing of different trauma causes.
The Role of Unequal Information Resources Distribution on Health Information Seeking • Heewon Im, University of Minnesota-Twin Cities; Jaeho Cho • The relationship between socioeconomic status (SES) and individuals’ health information seeking has been tested in previous studies, but not many explanations for the relationship have been suggested. In this study, the role of unequal resources distribution is proposed as a possible mechanism underlying both the relationship between SES and health information seeking and the relationship between social engagement and health information seeking. The information resources, which are time, money, and information skills, are not equally distributed across different SES groups and individuals’ levels of social engagement; the unequal distribution of resources results from individuals’ different abilities and motivations in seeking health information. In addition, the unequal resources distribution is predicted to moderate the effect of personal relevance of health issues on health information seeking, by varying motivation and ability level. The secondary data analysis was conducted using the 2007 ANHCS. The results show partial support for the positive relationship between social engagement and health information seeking. The study contributes to the theoretical understanding of the effect of social capital on individuals’ health.
Examination of message features in DTC ads and its impact on disclosure recall • Narayanan Iyer, Southern Illinois University Carbondale • Typically disclosures about risks and side effects are communicated via the audio modality in televised pharmaceutical drug commercials. A recent directive from the FDA advises prescription drug advertisers to concurrently convey disclosure information through both audio and video modality (congruence). The FDA also directs drug commercials to not have any elements that could potentially distract viewers from paying attention to disclosures (dominance). There is little research on DTC advertising that tests the impact of modality congruence and visual dominance on recall. An experiment was conducted (N = 98) to investigate this further and the results showed significant effects for visual dominance and its interaction with modality congruence.
Leading and Following in Medical Pack Journalism • Vincent Kiernan, Georgetown University • This study applies the concept of opinion leadership to the phenomenon of pack journalism among medical journalists at daily newspapers. Journalists were surveyed about stress and autonomy in their work. Respondents also were asked to identify other journalists whose work influences them. Regression analysis showed no relationship between autonomy or stress and the propensity of respondents to follow other journalists. Journalists at elite media outlets exerted significant influence over other journalists’ news coverage.
Potential for Cancer Care or Health Threats Producer?: Interaction Effects of News Frame and Information Processing Style on Further Information Seeking About Nanotechnology • Sojung (Claire) Kim, University of Wisconsin-Madison; Timothy Fung, Department of Communication Studies, Hong Kong Baptist University; Dominique BROSSARD, LSC, University of Wisconsin-Madison • This investigation explored main and interactive effects of different news frame and information processing style on further information seeking about nanotechnology and its effects on health treatment. With a total of 378 participants, a 2 (gain vs. loss frame) X 2 (systematic vs. heuristic information processing) between-subjects experimental design was used to test the proposed hypotheses. The study revealed that individuals who were exposed to a positively framed story about the use of nanotechnology in cancer care were more willing to seek out further information about the topic than those who in a negatively framed news. Moreover, individuals sought out information about the topic most when they systematically processed the information in a positively framed story, whereas they sought out the least amount of information when they systematically thought about the topic but in a negatively framed article. Theoretical insights and practical implications of the study findings are further discussed.
Online Information and Self-Reported Learning About Health Care Quality and Costs • Ashley Kirzinger, Louisiana State University; Margaret DeFleur, Louisiana State University; Kirby Goidel • According to a 2009 Pew Research Center study, 61 percent of Americans report going online for health-related information. Described as “e-patients,” this group of health consumers is frequently looking for very specific, tailored information with 60 percent of “e-patients” reporting that the information they found online related to the treatment of an illness or a condition. While we are beginning to understand the online behavior of individuals searching for information about a specific illness, considerably less is known about individuals’ reliance on the Internet for other aspects of health care information, especially information about health care quality and costs. A telephone survey of a random sample of Louisiana residents examined the factors associated with self-reported learning about health care quality and costs. We explore whether using online health information affects individuals’ intent to use a website that posts information about health care quality and costs. Results indicate that since online health information seeking is generally directed at specific diseases, there is little relationship between the use of online sources for medical and health-related information and self-reported learning about health care quality and costs. Yet, individual choice in health care providers is a strong predictor of increased levels of learning about health care quality and costs and increased levels of online health information seeking. We conclude by demonstrating that while there is ample interest among health consumers for information about health care quality and costs, there is a strong disconnect between consumer needs and the information that is available.
“Dr. Soundbite”: The Making of an Expert Source in Science and Medical Stories • Marjorie Kruvand, Loyola University Chicago • Bioethicists have been increasingly used as expert sources in science and medical stories involving ethical issues. This descriptive case study examines how and why a single bioethicist, Dr. Arthur L. Caplan, has become such a ubiquitous source on an extremely broad range of topics. Organizational news routines provide the theoretical framework for a content analysis of coverage in six newspapers over a 19-year period and interviews with Caplan and six science and medical journalists. The study finds that as part of the small, trusted roster of sources that journalists turn to again and again, Caplan has been the de facto representative of the bioethics profession in the news for the last two decades and has helped shape media discourse on bioethical issues. Findings show that Caplan is quoted so extensively because he understands and follows news routines, likes talking with reporters, provides pithy quotes, and is committed to public engagement. Critics are concerned, however, that Caplan’s personal opinions, values, and biases may be viewed by news consumers as “the” ethical position on issues.
The Influence of a Spin-off of a Health Division on the Content of Health News:A Comparison of Two Leading Korean Newspapers • Na Yeon Lee • This study examines how the establishment of a spin-off, a subsidiary of a parent company that was created as a strategy to increase profits for news organizations, affects the content of the health news. A content analysis of two leading Korean newspapers showed that the main frames of health news changed from promotion of a healthy lifestyle to medical treatments related to potential advertisers, such as private hospitals and pharmaceutical companies. Results also demonstrated that reporters relied more upon health news sources from potential advertisers. These findings suggest that a spin-off may influence the frames of news in ways that give more emphasis to advertisers. This study can contribute to framing research about the hierarchy of influence on news content by identifying the new factor of spin-offs.
The Role of Social Capital in Public Health Communication Campaigns: The Case of the National Youth Anti-Drug Media Campaign • Chul-joo Lee, The Ohio State University • In this paper, we explored how media health campaigns exert their effects through audience’s social capital. Using the National Survey of Parents and Youth (NSPY) dataset, we examined the interactive effects of parents’ campaign exposure and antidrug-specific social capital at both individual- and geographically-aggregated levels on parents’ drug-related talk with their child. We found main effects of parents’ campaign exposure and parents’ antidrug-specific community activities on their talk about drugs with their child. More interestingly, there was a negative interactive effect between campaign exposure and antidrug-specific community activities on the parent talking behavior. In contrast, there was neither a contextual effect of aggregate-level antidrug-specific social capital nor a cross-level interaction involving aggregate-level social capital. The implications of these findings for communication research and public health intervention were discussed.
Resources Aren’t Everything, But They Do Help! Assessing Local TV Health News to Deliver Substantive and Useful Information for Smart Health Decisions • Young Ah Lee, University of Missouri; Erin Willis, University of Missouri School of Journalism; Sun A Park; Hyunmin Lee • Gatekeeping theory informed this comparative analysis of local TV health news stories (N=416) from two different local television stations. Station characteristics such as available resources and network affiliation influenced length (Cramer’s V= .517), location (V= .369), health topics (V= .410), number and quality of news sources, and imputed target audience (V= .173) of local TV health newscasts.
Third-Person Effect and Rectifying Behaviors: Studying Antisocial and Prosocial Online Messages of Youth Drug Abuse • Wan Chi Leung, The Chinese University of Hong Kong • This study examined third-person perceptions for two types of online messages, the antisocial drug-encouraging messages and the prosocial anti-youth drug abuse messages, and their relationship with three types of rectifying behaviors, restrictive, corrective and promotional. While the perceptual gap of antisocial online messages significantly predicted three types of rectifying behaviors, that of prosocial messages failed. Instead, perceived effect of prosocial messages on the self significantly predicted higher likelihood of rectifying behaviors. Perceived effects of antisocial messages on the self and on others were also significant in predicting rectifying behaviors. This study thus calls for more investigation on perceived effects on the self, especially for prosocial messages. Examination of the target corollary was contrary to previous findings, showing that perceived exposure of others to prosocial messages was a significant predictor to behaviors. This points to more explorations on the role of perceived exposure to prosocial messages in the behavioral component.
An Examination of the Indirect Effects of Media on Intentions to Avoid Unprotected Sun Exposure • Jennette Lovejoy, University of Portland; Daniel Riffe, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill • A regional online survey (N=1, 251) of students enrolled at institutions of higher education examined whether internal psychological states, such as attitudes, social norms, perceived behavioral control, and perceived risk mediated the relationship between individual media environments and the likelihood of engaging in a health-adverse behavior such as unprotected sun exposure. Direct effects showed that general and health media use were significant predictors of tanning intentions. All psychological states, except perceived susceptibility, were positively related to intentions to avoid unprotected sun exposure. Indirect effects revealed that general news use was associated with a greater perception of one’s peers and important others engaging in sun protective behaviors, which in turn increased one’s own intentions to engage in sun protection behaviors. A single case of suppression was also evident and showed that individuals’ decreased perceptions of the severity of cancer enhanced the relationship between general newspaper use and sun protection intentions.
Effects of Proximity on the Cognitive Processing of Environmental News • Charles Meadows, University of Alabama; Cui Zhang, University of Alabama; Shuhua Zhou, University of Alabama • To investigate the influence of physical proximity on the cognitive and affective processing of environmental news stories, this study examined the physiological responses and cued recall to environmental news stories on four different environmental issues. The results showed that high-proximity environmental news stories elicited greater heart rate deceleration than low-proximity ones. No significant effects were found for proximity on electrodermal activity. Additionally, no significant effects were found for cued recall, suggesting only limited proximity effects on arousal and retrieval of environmental news stories. These findings present a complex role for proximity in the cognitive processing of news stories. Practical and theoretical implications are discussed.
Computer Mediated Social Support and the Effects of Expression: The Mediating Role of Perceived Bonding on Cancer Patients’ Coping Strategies • Kang Namkoong, University of Wisconsin – Madison; Dhavan Shah; Bryan McLaughlin, University of Wisconsin, Madison; Woohyun Yoo, University of Wisconsin – Madison; Sojung (Claire) Kim, University of Wisconsin-Madison; Shawnika Hull, University of Wisconsin; Tae Joon Moon; Courtney Johnson; Robert Hawkins; David Gustafson • This study examines the mechanism underlying the effects of computer-mediated social support (CMSS) on cancer patients’ coping strategies, distinguishing between the effects of the expression and the reception of emotionally supportive messages. 237 breast cancer patients participating in CMSS groups were included in the analysis. Findings show that the effects of (a) CMSS group use and (b) emotionally supportive expression on patients’ positive coping strategies are mediated by perceived bonding among breast cancer patients.
Acceptability of the H1N1 Vaccine among Older Adults: The Interplay of Message Framing and Perceived Vaccine Safety and Efficacy • Xiaoli Nan, University of Maryland; Bo Xie; Kelly Madden • This study examines the relative effectiveness of using gain- vs. loss-framed messages to promote H1N1 vaccination among older adults, focusing on the moderating role of the message recipients’ perceived vaccine safety and efficacy. An experiment was conducted with older adults recruited from senior centers in the state of Maryland. Results show that older adults who were presented with a loss-framed H1N1 vaccination message developed more favorable attitudes toward H1N1 vaccination and greater intentions to receive the vaccine. But these findings are only limited to older adults who perceived low vaccine efficacy. For those who perceived high vaccine efficacy, message framing didn’t make a difference in post-exposure attitudes and intentions. Overall, framing had no systematic main effects and perceived vaccine safety did not moderate framing effects.
Multilevel Analysis of the Impact of School-Level Tobacco Policies on Adolescent Smoking: Implications for Health Communication • Hye-Jin Paek, Michigan State University; Thomas Hove, Michigan State University; Hyun Jung Oh • This study explores what degrees and types of tobacco-free school policy (TFSP) enforcement are associated with adolescent smoking. A multilevel analysis using 1082 individual students who are nested in 14 schools indicates that a greater punishment of TFSP violation and more tobacco control communication efforts are associated with lower adolescent smoking. But designation of a tobacco-free school zone and school-level smoking are associated with higher adolescent smoking. Implications for effective communication efforts on TFSP are discussed.
(Conditional) Support, Permission, and Misconceptions: Considering Workplace Support for Breastfeeding • Sheila Peuchaud • This paper analyses the responses of 123 business owners and managers when asked about their current practices and attitudes concerning workplace support for breastfeeding mothers. The responses indicate that breastfeeding is largely considered a behavior that employers may or may not permit, placing the practice and womens’ bodies under the control of the employer. Space and time accommodations vary widely, and several responses indicated misconceptions which, if rectified, could extend support for breastfeeding to women in a wider variety of industries and socio-economic levels.
How does Doctor-Patient Communication Differ Based on the Gender of Doctor and the Gender of Patient? An Analysis of Entertainment-Education Based Network Medical Drama Grey’s Anatomy. • Lok Pokhrel, Washington State University • This study content analyzed the total of 12 episodes of Grey’s Anatomy of season six. Total of twenty four episodes of the season six, in which total of sixty eight (N= 68) units of doctor-patient (characters) interactions were coded. This study aimed to find whether there is any significant difference in the communication between doctor and patient due to their gender difference. This study didn’t find a significant difference in terms of doctor-patient communication influenced by the gender of the doctor. The study found that the patients have interacted more to the female doctor characters than to the male doctor characters; however, the difference is not significant except in two categories: patient providing information on past medical diagnosis, and patient seeking information on adjustment/coping (p<.05). In average, patients have communicated more with the female doctor characters than the male counterparts (Male: n=28, Female: n= 40).
The Role of Family Communication Style, Coviewing and Mediation in Family Nutrition Efficacy and Behavior • Erica Austin; Pinkleton Bruce; Marie Louise Radanielina-Hita; Weina Ran, Washington State University • An internet-based survey of 150 parents investigated parental communication styles, mediation and coviewing behaviors regarding media and family nutrition. The results indicated that concept-oriented parental communication predicted negative mediation and parental efficacy for making healthy changes in family nutrition behaviors, while socio orientation predicted the tendency to watch TV during dinner. Coviewing negatively predicted efficacy and positively predicted eating dinner while watching TV. The results suggest that interventions aimed at reducing obesity may benefit from targeting parental mediation strategies and encouraging concept-oriented approaches to family communication practices.
HIV Stigmatization and Stereotyping in Chinese News Coverage: From a Framing Perspective • Chunbo Ren, Washington State University; Stacey Hust, Washington State University; Peng Zhang, The University of Georgia; Yunze Zhao, Renmin University of China • A recent study revealed serious HIV/AIDS stigmatization is prevalent in Chinese media discourse. The current study extends this research by exploring how people living with HIV/AIDS (PLWHA) are portrayed in Chinese media, and how these media frame HIV transmission and responsibility attribution for PLWHA. The result suggests that the newspaper articles promote two different views of people living with HIV/AIDS that is dependent on the manner with which the contracted the disease. Individuals who contract the disease through socially acceptable means are worthy of being featured. In contrast, individuals who contract the disease through socially unacceptable means are less likely to be identified as individuals, and instead are devalued as a nondescript member of a highly dangerous group. This juxtaposition reinforces stigmatization the will mitigate China’s HIV/AIDS anti-stigma efforts.
Mind or Body? A Qualitative Framing Analysis of Fibromyalgia in Newspapers Versus Health Websites • Joy Rodgers, University of Florida; Mari Luz Zapata Ramos, University of Florida • This qualitative framing analysis examined stories and articles in newspapers and health websites to identify frames in the ongoing debate about whether fibromyalgia is a medical or mental affliction. A total of 95 articles retrieved from online archives of elite newspapers and top health information websites were analyzed. The study found that newspapers more frequently framed fibromyalgia in terms of a medical condition, while health websites leaned more toward a mental frame.
Self-identity and past behavior in risk information seeking intention: An augmented PRISM • Sonny Rosenthal, The University of Texas at Austin • This study augmented Kahlor’s (2010) planned risk information seeking model (PRISM). The augmented PRISM depicts risk information seeking intention as the product of attitudes toward seeking, seeking-related subjective norms, perceived control over seeking, affective response, information-seeking self-identity, and past seeking. This study used an online survey of Americans (N = 602) in order to assess the fit of the augmented model, with specific attention to the novel model components—information-seeking self-identity and past seeking. Results supported the proposed model (R2 = .62) and five stated hypotheses related to information-seeking self-identity. In addition, I explored a research question related to past seeking. A notable, but unanticipated finding was that—at least with the current sample—perceived behavioral control did not predict seeking intention significantly.
Inoculating against confusion and restoring confidence in vaccinations: A mental models approach to risk communication • Valarie Bell Wright, The College of Charleston; Heather Woolwine; Amanda Ruth-McSwain, College of Charleston; Margaret White, College of Charleston; Jennifer Lockhart, College of Charleston • Child vaccinations are considered a necessary precaution in safeguarding society by eliminating or reducing the occurrence of several potentially deadly diseases. While there is clear consensus amongst the medical community that vaccinations are critical, there exists some discrepancy in the importance and effects associated with vaccinations throughout the parent community. A parent’s decision to vaccinate is often complicated by fear or apprehension. As such, a mental models approach was used to guide the present study in an attempt to identify the gaps between expert knowledge and nonexpert (parents) understanding of the risks associated with child vaccinations. The results provide the framework for an informed message strategy to assuage fears as well as to provide research-based risk information regarding childhood vaccinations.
News Media’s Treatment of HPV Vaccination in Males: Analysis of U.S. Newspapers and Health Websites • Kang Hoon Sung, University of Florida; Kathryn Gerlach, University of Florida • In October 2009, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved Gardasil, a vaccine for the prevention of four types of human papillomavirus (HPV), for use in boys and men. No studies to date have been conducted to determine the manner in which mainstream media outlets frame vaccination of this particular segment of the population. The current study explores how the media have, thus far, presented this controversial issue. Analyses revealed a total of three dominant frames, which the media employed to present the issue of male HPV vaccination. These frames were: 1) Uncertainty, 2) Unreasonable cost and Vaccines as revenue creators, and 3) Opposition and Controversy.
“There would be no peace for me if I kept silent:” A discourse analysis of Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring • Melissa Thompson • Rachel Carson’s novel Silent Spring is often singled out as beginning the modern environmental movement. This paper explores the discourse of the novel itself, the sociocultural environment of the U.S. in the early 1960s, and the institution of literary journalism to draw conclusions about why the novel left such an impression on readers and lawmakers. The paper concludes that the manner in which Carson was able to frame the issue of pesticide use left a lasting impression on the upper middle-class readers who were likely to have read the work and taken up the book’s call to action.
News Valence and Attribution of Responsibility in a Cross-National Study of TV News Coverage of the 2009 UN Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen • Jiun-Yi Tsai, University of Wisconsin-Madison; Xuan Liang, Department of Life Science Communication; Magda Konieczna; Kristine Mattis, Environment and Resources Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies • This research examines how valence of media frames reflects cross-country differences in journalistic norms and national stakes on attribution of responsibility for climate change for alleviating global climate change. By analyzing prime-time television news in three major countries-the United States, China and Canada during the 2009 climate change conference in Copenhagen, we capture the media presentation of the overall valence toward the conference negotiation, home country’s performance, and foreign countries’ performance. The results indicate that the news media of the three countries commonly presented negative assessments throughout the Copenhagen conference. The news media valued their home country’s performance and foreign countries’ performance differently. The relationship between treatment responsibility in the home country and its country performance significantly differed cross the three countries. Reporters and anchors demonstrated national differences in overall tone of messages.
Competing with the conventional wisdom: Newspaper coverage of medical overtreatment • Kim Walsh-Childers, University of Florida College of Journalism & Communications; Jennifer Braddock, University of Florida • Overtesting and overtreatment in health care has had serious consequences, economically and physically, for an American public constantly in search of ways to maintain or regain good health. This qualitative content analysis considered examined the framing of overtreatment in four elite U.S. newspapers. Three frames emerged from the analysis: uncertainty on the part of physicians and patients, the costs of unnecessary medical tests and procedures, including their causes, and legal issues, including malpractice and fraud.
How will College Newspapers Frame a Pandemic? • Allison Weidhaas, University of South Florida • This paper explores how student reporters frame the risk of an infectious disease in their student newspapers. The researcher conducted a content analysis of 12 student newspapers selected from a multi-stage sample in the fall of 2009 to determine if students accurately present the level of risk. The findings indicate that as the potential personal risk of H1N1 increased, the students attempted to reduce anxiety by offering reassuring messages.
On-line Environmental Engagement among Youth: Influences of Parents, Attitudes and Demographics • Rob Wicks, University of Arkansas; Myria Allen; Stephanie Schulte, University of Arkansas • A national stratified quota sample of 1,096 parents and their children between the ages of 12 and 17 was conducted to investigate the factors that may be related to young people’s efforts to persuade members of their on-line social networks to be more environmental. Hierarchical regression analysis revealed that, while parents seem to influence youth behavior, the greatest variance in behavior was not explained by parents but by, among others, environmental self-efficacy, environmental news consumption, political interest, time spent online, and environmental consumerism. The regression model explained more of the variance in the girls’ online environmental advocacy than the boys’.
Construing health message framing: Motivational systems, valence of framing and event tendency of framing • Changmin Yan, Washington State University • Through a 2 (motivational systems: approach/avoidance) by 4 (framing: gain, no loss, loss and no gain) mixed design, this study tested two competing views on health message framing, i.e., the valence perspective and the event tendency view and their interactions with approach or avoidance motivational systems. Although empirical data favored both views when motivational systems were not considered, after adding motivational systems as a moderating variable, only the event tendency mediation model was supported.
Applying the Theory of Planned Behavior to Examine Preventive Behaviors against H1N1: A US-Singapore Comparison • Zheng Yang, SUNY at Buffalo; Jennifer Allen Catellier; Shirley S. Ho; May O. Lwin • This study applies the Theory of Planned Behavior to examine individuals’ intention to adopt preventive behaviors against the H1N1 influenza in the United States and in Singapore. Given the potential risks involved, an alternative measurement strategy is employed to assess attitude. Results suggest that past behavior, news deliberation, and favorable attitude were significant predictors of behavioral intention in both samples. However, societal-level risk perception and subjective norm had different influence between the two samples.
Framing HBV — Newspaper Coverage of HBV in China in 2009 • Chun Yang; Chunbo Ren, Washington State University • This paper focuses on newspapers’ coverage of hepatitis B in general and hepatitis B stigmatization during 2009 in mainland China. Medical treatment, HBV stigma, and anti-stigma efforts were the three main aspects highlighted by newspapers. Although Chinese newspaper coverage was positive with regards to anti-stigma efforts, newspapers placed responsibility on the individual to initiate anti-stigma activities. Additionally, newspapers contributed to the construction of HBV stigma by adopting stigmatizing terms among articles that supported anti-stigma efforts.
Toward A Theoretical Understanding of Using Online Health Communities: Motivation, Ability, and Doctor-Patient Communication Satisfaction • Yinjiao Ye • Drawing on the elaboration likelihood model and the behavioral of health services use, this study explores various correlates of participation in online health groups, including health-involvement variables, ability to use online health support groups, and consumer satisfaction with communication with health professionals and with health care received. The 2007 Health Information National Trend Survey data were analyzed. Results showed that controlling for demographics, health involvement variables, such as family cancer history and psychological health were significant. Also, consumer satisfaction with doctor-patient communication was marginally significant. This study adds to the literature by offering a conceptual understanding of use of online peer-to-peer health support; that is, motivation and ability to use online health information are important, and communication with online peers is pursued when communication with health professionals is less satisfactory.
Effects of Communication on Colorectal Cancer Screening: Revisited Health Belief Model • Woohyun Yoo, University of Wisconsin – Madison; MinWoo Kwon, University of Wisconsin at Madison • The Health Belief Model (HBM) has been the most commonly used in predicting individuals’ cancer screening behaviors. Numerous studies have investigated the role of communication as cue to behavior of Colorectal Cancer (CRC) screening in the HBM, but there is still a lack of research of the effect of communication in the HBM to predict CRC screening behaviors. Communication has a strong potential to play more influential and various roles in influencing CRC screening behaviors. Thus, this study explores how communication influences the behavior-making process of CRC screening on the basis of the HBM. Our findings suggest that communication has an impact on the components inherent in the HBM as well as the effect on CRC screening exert via the mechanism of the HBM.
Effects of Negative Exemplars of Celebrity Smoking on College Students’ Smoking • Woohyun Yoo, University of Wisconsin – Madison; Albert Gunther, University of Wisconsin – Madison • Most anti-smoking efforts have focused on adolescent smoking, and relatively little attention has been paid specifically to prevent college students’ smoking. Negative news stories on celebrity smoking increase the risk perception of smoking and they attract people’s attention to the problem inherent in smoking. From the point of view of the exemplification theory, this kind of news can be considered as an exemplar that influences individual assessment of smoking risk as well as contingent apprehension that motivates smoking avoidance and anti-smoking behavior. This study examines the effect of the negative exemplars of celebrity smoking in health news on college students’ perceived risk of smoking and smoking intentions. Our findings supported that negative exemplars of celebrity smoking have a strong impact on college students’ smoking. In addition, the effects are moderated by smoking status. Ever-smokers who read smoking news with negative exemplars of celebrity smoking are more likely to report higher levels of perceived risk of smoking and lower levels of smoking intentions, but never-smokers do not show the patterns
Quiet, Creeping, and Sudden?!: Exploring Public Information Officers’ Definitions of Health Crisis • Elizabeth Avery and Tatjana Hocke, University of Tennessee • Practitioners’ responses to crises and academic theory construction are guided by how crises are conceptualized; yet, research informing how we define and discuss crisis is limited contextually. Depth interviews with 17 public information officers (PIOs) provide new insights into public health crisis. Interview analysis reveals unique crisis characteristics as a foundation for future research and theory construction in public relations, specifically crisis communication: resources, organizational partnerships, nature of crisis and publics, and internal management.
Developing a Valid and Reliable Measure of Crisis Responsibility • Kenon A. Brown and Eyun-Jung Ki, University of Alabama • This study attempted to develop a reliable and valid measure of a crisis responsibility that could be uniquely applied to public relations research. The four dimensional measure of crisis responsibility was initially tested and refined using Netemeyer’s (2003) four-step process for scale construction. Specifically, this study conducted rigorous two-step pilot tests and a nationwide panel full administration survey. The constructed measures were further refined using exploratory factor analysis and confirmatory factor analysis. The factor analysis resulted in including 11-items in the final crisis responsibility scales, consisting of two items for intentionality, three items for locality and six items for accountability. Confirmatory factor analysis was used to test the hypothesized factor structure and confirmed the three dimensions of crisis responsibility scale had reliable and valid factor structure.
Twittering to the Top: A Proposed Model for Using and Measuring Twitter as a Communication Tool • Haley Edman and Nicole Dahmen, Louisiana State University • The microblogging site, Twitter, has become a communication channel where interpersonal conversations between millions of users thrive. This study examines how 47 corporations use Twitter as a communication and relationship-building tool. Grounded in Grunig’s four models of public relations, the research concludes with implications of using Twitter and how public relations practitioners can effectively use Twitter for developing and maintaining long-term, mutually beneficial relationships with publics.
Relationship Management With the Millennial Generation of Public Relations Agency Employees • Tiffany Gallicano, University of Oregon • The purpose of this study is to achieve a deep understanding of the Millennial generation of practitioners who work at public relations agencies and to understand the best ways of building effective relationships with them. Data was gathered through five asynchronous focus groups with a total of 51 participants. The data resulted in implications for Millennial practitioners, for the teachers who work with them, and for the bosses who manage them.
Strategize – Implement – Measure – Repeat: Are We Evaluating Our Way to PR Accountability • Susan Grantham, University of Hartford; Edward Vieira, Simmons College • This study examines attitudes toward PR measurement, if evaluation is a standard part of the planning process, and who is driving this demand. Through the assistance of PRSA, 256 PR professionals participated (66% = women and 34% = men). Findings revealed that although encouraged by senior management, respondents were evenly split on the need to evaluate. Senior management and those involved with strategic planning perceived value to PR measurement”
What Information is Available For Stakeholders on Facebook and How Does This Information Impact Them? • Michel Haigh and Pamela Brubaker, Pennsylvania State University; Erin Whiteside, University of Tennessee • This two-part study examines organizations’ Facebook pages. First a content analysis was conducted of 114 organizations’ Facebook pages. Results indicate organizations update their Facebook pages about every 15 days. Coding results indicate Facebook pages major purpose is public relations, and organizations post similar types of information as nonprofit Facebook pages. Facebook does promote two-way communication, and offers some general information about corporate social responsibility. After the content analysis was conducted, a two-phase experiment was employed (N = 275) to see how the Facebook pages impact stakeholders. Results indicate Facebook pages bolster stakeholders’ attitudes toward the organization, perceptions of the organization – public relationship, and purchase intent. Experimental results indicate if an organization discusses CSR efforts on its Facebook page, it leads to more favorable perceptions of the organization – public relationship, perceptions of CSR, and purchase intent than when an organization uses Facebook to discuss products and services.
Communication and the D.C. Sniper: Toward a response typology for public safety crises • J Suzanne Horsley and Kenon A. Brown, University of Alabama • The D.C. Sniper case of 2002 provides an opportunity to explore crisis communication responses by law enforcement and government sources during the three-week shooting spree. The authors generated a list of 32 possible crisis communication responses from image repair theory, situational crisis communication theory, best practices in crisis communication, and best practices in emergency management communication. The results showed that image repair theory and SCCT did not provide an adequate explanation of the communication choices made during this event. The authors propose a public safety crisis communication typology that fills a gap in the existing crisis communication literature that does not take into account organization type or goals.
Toward A Theory of Public Relations Practitioners’ Own Conflict: Work vs. Life • Hua Jiang, Towson University; Hongmei Shen, San Diego State University • This study took a first step to build a theory understanding public relations practitioners’ work-life balance. Specifically, through a national sample of PRSA members, we examined what factors give rise to public relations practitioners’ perceptions of work-life conflict and what kind of impact such perceived work-life conflict may have on their income and career path. Analysis of online survey data of 820 public relations practitioners found that a more family-supportive organizational work environment overall would minimize practitioners’ reported work-life conflict. Gender did matter, especially in explaining strain-based conflict perceived by practitioners. Lastly, regardless of gender, practitioners generally received lower salaries if their career was ever interrupted. Theoretical and practical implications are discussed.
The Impact of Organizational Social Capital on Transparency and Trust: Communication Adequacy and Accuracy • Bumsub Jin, State University of New York at Oswego; Moonhee Cho, University of Florida; Maria De Moya, University of Florida • The purpose of this research was twofold: First, based on social capital, the study examined whether adequacy and accuracy of communication are empirically different as indicators of organizational social capital. Second, it tested the impact of these indicators on three measurable outcomes (transparency, trust in corporations, and behavioral intent), which are related to effectiveness of public relations. The study was conducted in two phases. The first included a statewide mail survey and the second a 2 x 2 between-group experiment. Results of CFA analysis showed evidence of empirical difference between adequacy and accuracy. A two-way MANCOVA test found effects of the two indicators on organizational transparency, trust, and behavioral intent. These results suggest theoretical and practical implications of how social capital indicators can contribute to organizational effectiveness in the perspective of public relations.
Determinants of Ethical Practices of Public Relations Practitioners • Eyun-Jung Ki and William Gonzenbach, University of Alabama; Hong-Lim Choi, Sun Moon University; Junghyuk Lee, Kwangwoon University • The present study was designed to examine various determinant variables influencing public relations practitioners’ ethical practices. Six variables, consisting of idealism, relativism, age, gender, education, and awareness of ethics code existence, were utilized for this study. Results indicate that relativism and awareness of ethics code existence directly impact ethical practices, whereas age influenced ethical practices though relativism.
Relative effectiveness of prior corporate ability vs. corporate social responsibility associations on public responses in corporate crises • Sora Kim, University of Florida • This experimental study employing both victim and preventable crises supports strong transferring effects of corporate ability (CAb) and corporate social responsibility (CSR) associations on the public’s responses in corporate crises. In addition, CSR associations are found to be more effective than CAb associations in offsetting detrimental damage created by corporate crises. The study argues that the reason for more enduring and salient transferring effects of prior CSR associations in crisis situations is because CSR associations are positioned on a company’s virtue-related dimensions, whereas CAb associations are positioned on its skill-focused dimensions.
Revisiting the effectiveness of base crisis response strategies in comparison of reputation management crisis responses • Sora Kim and Kang Hoon Sung, University of Florida • This experimental study found that employing reputation management crisis-response strategies was no better than adopting only the base crisis-response strategy (i.e., instructing and adjusting information) in terms of generating positive responses from the public. Two-sided messages (i.e., sharing both positive and negative information) in crisis communication were found to be more effective than one-sided messages in a victim crisis. In addition, even in a preventable crisis, one-sided messages (i.e., sharing only positive information) were not more effective than two-sided messages. Finally, the study found little support for Situational Crisis Communication Theory (SCCT)’s recommendations for the best crisis response strategy selections.
Presidential apology and level of acceptance: The U.S.Beef import negotiation upheaval in South Korea • Yungwook Kim and Yujin Lim, Ewha Womans University • The purpose of this paper is to analyze apology strategies used by South Korean President Myung-bak Lee during the U.S. beef import negotiation upheaval in South Korea in 2008, and to investigate how these apologies were perceived by the South Korean public. The role of party identification as an audience-related variable in the perception of political apologies in the South Korean context was then examined. A content analysis of President Lee’s speeches and related daily newspaper coverage was conducted, and experimental work assessing the level of acceptance of the President’s apology strategies as well as the effects of party identification on the level of acceptance was also carried out. As a result, two new strategies, ambiguous corrective action and fear mongering, were identified and added to the existing apology classification of Benoit (1995). According to the results of the experimental work, President Lee’s apology strategies were generally ineffective, with the exception of the clear corrective action strategy. The impact of party identification on the level of acceptance of the major apology strategies was then confirmed.
Influencing forces or mere interview sources? What media coverage about health care means for key constituencies • Cheryl Ann Lambert and Denis Wu, Boston University • This study aimed to discover the strategies and actions of those involved in the mediated communication process of health care reform during 2009-10. The researchers conduct in-depth telephone interviews of twelve identified sources that appeared in print and broadcast media coverage. The semi-structured questions of the interview centered on the sources’ activities and their interaction with media professionals and policy makers during that time frame. The results of the interviews revealed that sources were keenly aware of media’s tendencies and practices. Given the complexity of this issue, the sources stressed the importance of expertise, knowledge, and ability to explain the matter in a lucid fashion to the general public. They also agreed on the anxiety of the American people toward the issue and the important role media played in the policy-making process.
Finding antecedents of CSR perceptions and Relationship Outcomes: Individual-Level Collectivist Orientation and CSR Genuineness • Hyunmin Lee, Ye Wang, Glen Cameron and Shelly Rodgers, University of Missouri • The purpose of this study was to identify and test individual-level collectivist orientation and CSR genuineness as antecedent factors of CSR activity perceptions and organization-public relationship (OPR) outcomes. Based on multidisciplinary literature, this study proposed a model that individual-level collectivist orientation is positively associated with positive perceptions of CSR activates, perceptions of the CSR activities as being genuine, and positive organization- public relationship management outcome of satisfaction and commitment. The model also projected that CSR genuineness is positively associated with positive perceptions of CSR activities. Structural equation modeling (SEM) was conducted to test seven hypotheses, and the analyses concluded that individual-level collectivist orientation and CSR genuineness are significant antecedents to CSR perceptions and OPR outcomes.
Legitimacy Disputes and Social Amplification of Perceived Risk • Joon Soo Lim and Kwansik Mun, Middle Tennessee State University; Sung-Un Yang, Syracuse University • This article examined how the legitimacy disputes for government’s risk communication affected online publics’ perceived risk in the case of the 2008 U.S. beef import controversy in South Korea. A content analysis of the Korean blogosphere revealed that there have been notable changes in types of legitimacy disputes and perceptions of risk among bloggers, across four phases of issued development. Results of the content analysis produced significant two-way interaction effects between legitimacy and such risk communication phases, as well as between perceived risk and risk communication phases. As the key finding of the study suggests, failures to establish a legitimate and credible public relations program during the risk situation caused inflated public fear and created enormous damage to involving constituencies, followed by huge protests from disgruntled publics.
Effective Public Relations Leadership in Organizational Transformation: A Case Study of Multinationals in Mainland China • Yi Luo, Montclair State University • This study explores the role of public relations leadership during organizational transformation in four multinational organizations in mainland China. The results are based on 40 in-depth interviews. Particularly, the findings suggest that organization-wide public relations leadership during change was shown through managing employee emotions, providing training to middle management, resolving conflicts, and reinforcing shared visions. Individually, the senior public relations directors exhibit leadership during change through advising top management’s communication styles, fostering participatory management, and challenging management decisions. The senior public relations participants also demonstrated popular leadership types (e.g., transformational, pluralistic, and interactive leadership). This findings support existing research on leadership in public relations and also shed light on some unique dimensions about public relations leadership during organizational transformation.
“Like” or “Unlike”: How Millennials Are Engaging and Building Relationships with Organizations on Facebook • Tina McCorkindale, Appalachian State University; Marcia DiStaso, Pennsylvania State University • More than half of Facebook’s 500 million active users in the U.S. consist of the Millennial generation (ages 13 to 29). With more organizations taking advantage of the site’s high consumer ratings, determining how organizations are interacting with Millennials on Facebook is important. Thirty Millennials participated in one of three focus groups. Results indicate participants were not opposed to interacting with organizations on Facebook, but were very specific in terms of how and why they wanted to engage. Suggestions for future research are included.
How Companies Cultivate Relationships with Publics on Social Network Sites in China and the United States: A Cross-Cultural Content Analysis • Linjuan Rita Men and Wanhsiu Tsai, University of Miami • This study extends the investigation of relationship cultivation on social media from a cross-culture perspective by examining how companies use popular social network sites (SNSs) to facilitate dialogues with publics in two culturally distinct countries: China and the United States. In order to understand dialogic relationships on SNSs, we incorporate both the messages of the organizations and the voices of the publics. Through an exploratory content analysis of fifty corporate pages with 500 corporate posts and 500 user posts from each country, findings suggest that overall, companies in both countries have employed the relationship-cultivation strategies proposed by scholars but the specific tactics vary across the two markets. Furthermore, this study finds cross-cultural differences among the types of corporate posts and public posts on SNSs, indicating that cultural differences play a significant role in shaping the dialogue between organizations and publics in different countries. This analysis provides implications and suggestions for future research.
Testing the Theory of Cross-National Conflict Shifting: A Quantitative Content Analysis and a Case Study of the Chiquita Brands’ Transnational Crisis Originated in Colombia • Juan-Carlos Molleda and Vanessa Bravo, University of Florida; Andrés Felipe Giraldo Dávila and Luis Horacio Botero, Universidad de Medellín • This study uses the Cross-National Conflict Shifting theory to analyze Chiquita Brands’ transnational crisis originated in Colombia with consequences in the United States. The research includes a content analysis and a case study conducted by U.S. and Colombian scholars. This research contributes to the global public relations’ body of knowledge by supporting nine out of 10 theoretical propositions, and further supporting the theory with three research questions and eight hypotheses (two partially supported, six supported).
Exploring Negative Organization-Public Relationships (OPR) in Public Relations: Toward the Development of an Integrated Measurement Model of OPR • Bitt Beach Moon and Yunna Rhee, Hankuk University of Foregin Studies • Although several organization-public relationship measurements have been developed in public relations, negative characteristics of organization-public relationship (OPR) have not been researched extensively. As much as it is important to understand how public relations can contribute to the development of positive OPR, it is also important to know how negative OPR can hamper or damage public relations efforts. In this regard, the study focuses on exploring the negative dimensions OPR, and attempt to develop an integrated measurement model of OPR. In order to develop the model, this study implemented a thorough literature review, expert surveys, pretests, and two surveys. The study identified four negative OPR dimensions including dissatisfaction, distrust, control dominance, and dissolution. The study results revealed that the 32-item, integrated OPR scale including the negative and the positive dimensions is reliable and valid. Theoretical and practical implications of the study results are also discussed.
Students’ Motivations and Expectations for Service Learning in Public Relations • Nancy Muturi, and Samuel Mwangi, Kansas State University; Soontae An, Ewha Womans University • The paper is a survey of public relations students (N=96) on their motivations to engage in service learning projects and their expectations from that engagement over two year period. It reports their understanding of service learning, prior engagement in service learning projects and how this influences their attitudes and expectations for participating in the project. Results show no significant association between prior engagement and attitudes or motivation but motivation and attitude are significantly associated. Motivation is also significantly associated with expectations from the project.
Consumer Knowledge of News Making: How Increased Persuasion Knowledge of Video News Releases Influences Beliefs and Trust in a News Story • Michelle Nelson and Sangdo Oh, University of Illinois-Urbana-Champaign; Jiwoo Park, Southern Illinois University • News stories offer valuable information to consumers and drive sales for featured companies. Many stories are inspired by video news releases (VNRs), which are short video segments created and provided by a public relations agency to the news organization for free. Across two studies, we show how viewers’ beliefs about and perceptions of credibility in a news story “change” as their persuasion knowledge about VNRs and the featured story increases.
The Effective of Dialogic Relationship on the Military Public Relationship • Sejin Park, Lisa Fall and Michael Kotowski, University of Tennessee; • This research investigates the influence of dialogic relationship and organizational cultures on the military-public relationship. College students (N=218) participated in a 2 x 2 (levels of dialogic relationship: high vs. low x organizational cultures: military vs. civilian) factorial design experiment. The results reveal that dialogic relationship exerts a strong effect on the military-public relationship by improving the degree of control mutuality, trust, commitment and communal relationship and that organizational culture has a partial influence on the military-public relationship. The results of this study have both theoretical important practical implications for military public affairs. Implications and recommendations are discussed.
Integrated Impression Management: How NCAA Division I Athletics Directors Understand Public Relations • Angela Pratt, Bradley University • The purpose of this study is to learn how intercollegiate athletics directors (ADs) understand public relations. For this study, a qualitative approach was used. Twelve NCAA Division I ADs were interviewed, and their transcripts were analyzed using comparative analysis procedures. The findings show that the participants understand public relations as integrated impression management: a combination of image, message, and action/interaction. The results imply that executives do not necessarily separate public relations from other disciplines, such as marketing.
Issue Salience Formation among Information Subsidies and Business Media Coverage during Corporate Proxy Contests • Matt Ragas, DePaul University • This study tests for issue agenda-building between corporate-controlled information subsidies (news releases and shareholder letters) and business media coverage during contested corporate elections, known as proxy contests. Detailed content analyses of subsidies and media coverage in the 25 largest proxy fights over a five-year period (2005-2009) support the agenda-building proposition and suggest issue salience formation may be a contributing factor in a successful contest outcome. The theoretical and practical implications of these findings are discussed.
Internal Relationship Building: A Chinese Story • Hongmei Shen, San Diego State University • This study was one of the first to empirically test a relationship-building model within organizations in an international context, in the hopes of developing an international theory of internal relationship management, to add to the extant strategic management paradigm of public relations. It tested a model that included symmetrical relationship maintenance strategies as antecedents, quality relationships between organizations and their employees as the mediator, and subsequent behavioral outcomes, i.e., employees’ turnover intention and contextual performance behavior. Data were collected from an online survey of 568 Chinese employees working in a variety of types of organizations. Structural equation modeling results supported all the hypothesized linkages.
The overlooked sector: An analysis of nonprofit public relations literature • Hilary Fussell Sisco, Quinnipiac University; Erik Collins and Geah Pressgrove, University of South Carolina • Using a content analysis, this study identified the number of articles about nonprofit public relations published in the Journal of Public Relations Research and Public Relations Review from their inceptions through 2010. Various aspects of the journal articles were examined, including types of nonprofit organizations studied, theoretical frameworks and research methodologies. A key finding is evidence of a recent growth in the number of articles published, but an overall paucity of research specifically about nonprofit public relations. Also, there was a noticeable lack of theory-based research in the journal articles studied, in contrast to the number of introspective articles published about nonprofit public relations.
Women as Public Relations Managers: Show Me the Money • Bey-Ling Sha and David Dozier, San Diego State University • Using probability sampling, a 2010 survey of Public Relations Society of America members confirmed hypotheses that women earn significantly lower salaries than men, have less professional experience, and enact the technician role more frequently than men. Counter to hypotheses, women enacted the manager role as frequently as did men. Men and women did not differ significantly in the role (manager or technician) they enacted predominantly. Income differences were reduced but remained statistically significant after controlling for role enactment and professional experience.
Corporate Social Performance and Reputation: Effects of Industry and Corporate Communication • Weiting Tao and Mary Ann Ferguson, University of Florida • Corporate social performance (CSP) and corporate reputation have become two concepts of strategic significance to corporations. By conducting secondary data analysis, this study attempted: (1) to explore relationships between seven CSP dimensions (i.e., community, environment, employee relations, diversity, product, human rights, and corporate governance) and corporate reputation, and (2) to discover whether industry type and corporate communication efforts moderate the relationship between CSP and corporate reputation.
A network approach to public diplomacy: A case study of U.S. public diplomacy in Romania • Antoneta Vanc, Quinnipiac • Few studies have attempted to explore public diplomacy practices around the world and the scholarship that investigates public diplomacy practices in the newly democratic countries now members of the European Union is even scarcer. Hence, this exploratory case study looks at U.S. public diplomacy practices in Romania and aims to explore in more detail diplomats’ functions abroad. By employing the relationship management theory of public relations, this case study seeks to explore diplomats’ roles of facilitators of relationships between people of the two countries and their role of catalysts of relationships within the Romanian civil society. Data collected through in-depth interviews with former U.S. diplomats who served in Romania during 2001-2009, reveal diplomats’ new roles of creators and managers of networks of relationships, which ultimately aim to establish the embassy as a social, cultural, professional, and business network hub in the host society.
Representational, structural, and political intersectionality of public relations’ publics • Jennifer Vardeman-Winter, University of Houston; Hua Jiang, Towson University; Natalie Tindall, Georgia State University • We interviewed 31 women of different racial, socioeconomic, age, and relationship backgrounds to explore the extent to which they perceived their multiple, overlapping identities impact their health decision-making. This study is an effort to provide evidence to a proposed publics’ theory of intersectionality. We suggest that publics experience co-occurring oppression and privilege in varying contexts: in representations of them, in policies that impact them, and in structures that enable or hinder their ability to do something about their health. The topic we explored with participants was how their identities impacted their perceptions of the new recommendations for breast cancer screening. Findings suggest that gendered roles are the most salient identity for these women; furthermore, the data demonstrate that age, race, and class alter how women perceive their roles have been recognized by policy-makers. The findings expand current theory of segmentation of publics and policy-making as well as practical suggestions for how to understand publics’ unique situations more comprehensively.
Motivating Publics to Act: An Analysis of the Influence of Message Strategy and Involvement on Relational Outcomes and Communication Behavior • Kelly Werder and Michael Mitrook, University of South Florida • This study tested the main and interaction effects of public relations message strategies and issue involvement on relational outcomes and communication behavior. The results of a 2 x 6 factorial design (N = 333) indicate that issue involvement influences trust, control mutuality, and commitment in publics. Message strategies and issue involvement significantly influence communication behavior. Cooperative problem solving strategies were the most effective in motivating publics to act in both high and low issue involvement conditions.
Private labeling, crisis communication and media influence: The Menu Foods pet food recall • Worapron Worawongs and Colleen Connolly-Ahern, Pennsylvania State University • In 2007, Menu Foods Inc. issued a voluntary recall of more than 60 million cans and pouches of pet food, becoming the largest recall recorded in the United States. The current study investigates the complexities of crisis communication in the current private label manufacturing environment through an examination of information subsidies distributed and news accounts written during the Menu Foods crisis. Analysis of the press releases disseminated during the pet food recall revealed organizations predominantly adopted excuses and defense of innocence strategies to protect their images. The findings indicated organizations were not effective in getting journalists to adopt their image restoration strategies.
Localization of Public Health News Releases for Publication in Community Newspapers • Rachel Young, Erin Willis, Jon Stemmle and Shelly Rodgers, University of Missouri • Although localization is linked to publication of news releases, no study analyzes localized news releases in their published form. This study uses content analysis to compare the rate and form of health news releases (n = 378) published in urban and suburban vs. rural newspaper. Localization of content spurred publication in community newspapers and retention of localized data and resources referrals. Our findings indicate that localization assists in disseminating public health messages to rural audiences.
Missing citations, bulking biographies and unethical collaboration: Types of cheating among public relations’ majors • Giselle Auger, Duquesne University • Educators know and research has shown that students cheat (McCabe and Trevino (1993; 1996). It would stand to reason then that students of public relations are not immune from such practice. For a field such as public relations that has had a continual struggle for credibility, the issue of student cheating should be paramount, for the unethical students of today become tomorrow’s practitioners. Therefore, the purpose of this exploratory study was to examine the extent to which public relations majors cheat, and the types of academically dishonest behaviors in which they participate. Results of the study indicated cause for concern as more than 79% of students admitted to cheating and the average number of times students participated in any given cheating behavior ranged from a low of 1.9 times to a high of 3.5 times.
Perceptions of public relations students’ empowerment, faculty interaction, and perceived relationship investment as determinants of relationship quality with their academic department • Moonhee Cho, University of Florida; Giselle Auger, Duquesne University • Scholars of public relations stress that the role of public relations is to help organizations manage their relationships with publics (Broom, 2010); however, studies of the relationship between students (as publics) and their academic departments (as organizations) has been neglected. This oversight is surprising as the on-going recession, economic uncertainty, and increased costs of post-secondary education (Cotton & Wilson, 2006; Pryor, Hurtado, DeAngelo, Palucki, Blake, & Tran, 2010) have placed increased scrutiny on colleges and universities not only by parents but also by government such as, state legislatures (Tinto, 2006-07; Rockwell, 2011). Research indicates that part of a quality post-secondary educational experience should involve student-faculty interaction (Kuh & Hu, 2001; Tinto, 2006-07). Given the increasing need for retention of satisfied and successful students, and given the demonstrated importance of faculty-student interaction to retention of students, the purpose of this study was to examine the relationships between student empowerment, faculty-student interaction, students’ perceived relationship investment of department and the perceived quality of relationships formed with students’ departments. Results of the study demonstrate the significance in relationship between student-faculty interaction, empowerment, and perceived relationship investment to quality of student-departmental relationships.
Are we teaching them to be CSR managers? Examining students’ expectations of practitioner roles in CSR • Rajul Jain; Lawrence Winner • This study examines the roles that public relations students expect to play in corporate social responsibility (CSR) and how these perceptions are influenced by their public relations education and professional training, as well as their personal and professional values. A survey of 198 college students reveals that students most strongly identify with a managerial role in CSR and that their attitudes have a significant association with their values and an insignificant association with their training.
Service-Learning for Branding Success: A Case of Student-Client Engagement in Oklahoma State University’s $1 Billion Capital Campaign • Lori McKinnon, Oklahoma State University; Jacob Longan; Bill Handy • This paper offers a case analysis of student-client service learning in OSU’s $1 billion, capital campaign, Branding Success. Capstone campaign students joined with the OSU Foundation to develop and implement strategic plans for the campaign and its OSUccess scholarship contest component. The service-learning arrangement succeeded in engaging the University community in an online conversation about “success,” in securing media coverage, in generating attendance at the campaign launch event, and in stressing the importance of giving.
U.S. Student-Run Communication Agencies: Enhancing Students’ Understanding of Business Protocols and Professionalism • Lee Bush, Elon University; Barbara Miller, Elon University • Student-run communications agencies mimic professional public relations and advertising agencies by providing students with a professional environment in which to work on real projects for real clients. This study involved a survey of agency advisors at AEJMC universities and ACEJMC-accredited universities to evaluate the attributes, structure, and perceived student learning outcomes of agencies in the U.S. Additionally, this study examined how agency structure, workspace and advisor commitment impact agency protocols and student learning outcomes.
College vs. Credential: What Do Entry-Level Practitioners in Public Relations Need? • Bey-Ling Sha, San Diego State University; John Forde; Jay Rayburn • Using an online survey (response rate=16.4%; n=1,634), this study examined the attitudes of members of the Public Relations Society of America regarding entry-level qualifications in public relations in general, as well as their views on an entry-level credential in particular. In short, association members generally felt positively toward both public relations-specific curriculum and toward the concept of an entry-level certification. The manuscript also examines the history of both public relations curriculum and the effort to establish an entry-level certification in public relations.
A Process Evaluation of the Carolina Covenant’s Communication Strategy • Joseph Erba, Stephanie Silverman and Luisa Ryan, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill • Low-income high school students are most in need of financial aid programs to attend college. Concomitantly, they are also the least informed about scholarship opportunities. A process evaluation assessed the communication strategy of the Carolina Covenant, the first loan-free financial aid package offered by an American public university. Best practices and recommendations are discussed. Findings could help other programs hone their communication efforts and conduct their own process evaluations.
Forty Years of Award-Winning Campaigns: What PRSA’s Silver Anvil-Winning Campaigns Say about the Public Relations Industry • Eva Hardy, North Carolina State University • Public relations textbooks prescribe a common approach to the campaign development process: Conduct research to understand the situation and publics, develop goals and objectives prior to planning and implementing the campaign, evaluating the efforts and finally carrying out stewardship elements to further the relationship with the campaign’s targeted audiences. This process has become the norm for the public relations industry. This project seeks to provide a more sound description of professional norms in the public relations industry by analyzing Silver Anvil-winning public relations campaigns from 1969 to 2010 (n = 420). A content analysis of the award-winning campaigns from the Public Relations Society of America database reveals trends in how the five phases of the campaign process have been carried out over the past 42 years as well as striking differences in how public relations agencies and non-agency campaign sources carry out the campaign development process.
Public Diplomacy at Arab Embassies: Fighting an Uphill Battle • Leysan Khakimova, University of Maryland • Following the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001, the practice and study of public diplomacy gained increased attention. However, three major gaps are evident in public diplomacy literature: weak theoretical background, the lack of empirical research, and limited scope of many studies. This study seeks to address some of the gaps in the literature by using Benoit’s image repair theory to explore Arab governments’ public diplomacy efforts in the United States. Analysis of 16 interviews with Embassy employees and 84 documents retrieved from Embassies’ websites revealed that Arab embassies face opportunities and constraints relating to culture, power, strategic planning, interpersonal and online communication. In addition to theoretical implications, the study offers practical suggestions to government employees on building a positive relationship with foreign publics such as giving more power and independence to embassies as well as using embassies’ cultural and communication expertise to engage with foreign audiences.
How a Public Evaluate an Organization’s Official Statement to pursue Organizational Transparency: An Impact of Organizational Claims to Truth on the Public’s Perception of Credibility toward the Content • Bo Kyung Kim and Seoyeon Hong, University of Missouri • Guided by previous research in transparency (Allen, 2008; Craft & Heim, 2009; Mitchelle & Steele, 2005; Plaisance, 2007; Sweetser, 2010) and the empirical study regarding two types of organizational claims to pursue transparency (Kim, Hong, & Cameron, 2011), this study explores the lay public’s estimation of the initial measure for organizational transparency (Rawlins, 2009) and a relationship between an organization’s claim to pursue transparency, perceived credibility of the claim, and organizational reputation. Factor analyses and bootstrapping analysis are used.
Youth Political Engagement: Factors That Influence Involvement • Jarim Kim, University of Maryland, College Park • This study employed qualitative, in-depth interviews with college students to look at how and why they became actively engaged in the political process. The situational theory of publics was employed as a guideline to examine their active participation. Specific attention was given to the antecedent factors of involvement. Findings indicate that a set of factors, including issue relevance, source characteristics, communication strategies, significant others, general interests about the world, and emotional satisfaction, influenced an active public’s level of involvement. Lastly, this paper discusses theoretical elaborations of the situational theory of publics and practical implications for political campaign practitioners.
Exploring the Impact of CEO Credibility on Perceived Organizational Reputation and Employee Engagement • Linjuan Rita Men, University of Miami • The purpose of this study is to explore how corporate leadership influence internal public relations effectiveness by examining the relationships between CEO credibility, employees’ evaluation of organizational reputation and employee engagement. To that end, an on-line survey was conducted with 157 employees at different levels of position from a Fortune 500 company. Key findings include that CEO credibility is positively associated with perceived organizational reputation and employee engagement. Organizational reputation in the eyes of employees has a large and positive impact on employee engagement. In addition, employees’ perception of organizational reputation fully mediates the impact of CEO credibility on employee engagement. Important theoretical and practical implications of this study are discussed.
The Impact of Dialogue on Blog Traffic: An Analysis of the Blogs of the Philanthropy 400 • Sarah Merritt, Dale Mackey and Lauren Lawson, North Carolina State University • The five principles of dialogue, as described and measured according to the methodology of Kent and Taylor (1998), were used to identify and measure the use of dialogic principle on blogs hosted by nonprofit organizations. Using every blog available from organizations on the Philanthropy 400 list, 124 blogs were coded using a 32-item coding schema, measuring ease of interface, conservation of visitors, useful information, generation of return visitors, and the dialogic loop. Most nonprofit blogs used the five principles, however to varying degrees, and few similarities of dialogue principle use was found across all nonprofit subsectors. Our results also showed that blogs frequently utilizing the dialogic principles frequently had higher traffic rankings, although traffic ranking was not affected by the number of sites that linked to individual blogs. The number of sites linking in to a blog was higher for nonprofits with a top ranking on the Philanthropy 400 list.
Impact of corporate social responsibility on consumers’ attribution of a crisis responsibility: A buffer against reputation withdrawal or a backfire • Hanna Park, University of Florida • This study aimed to examine how CSR-crisis congruency interacted with the severity of crisis on subjects’ attribution of the crisis, attitude, trust, and supportive behavior intention toward a company. Specifically, 2 (severe crisis vs. minor crisis) _ 3 (high CSR-crisis congruency vs. low CSR-crisis vs. no CSR information) factorial designs were used to investigate main effects of two independent variables and their interaction. Six experiment booklets were developed for the study. Results showed that subjects in the severe and high CSR-crisis congruency condition indicated (1) more negative attitudes, (2) less trust, and (3) less supportive behavior intention toward the company than people in the low CSR-crisis congruency condition. Despite the negative effects that occur when CSR programs are congruent with severe crises, this study provides evidence that implementing CSR programs is preferable to not making any CSR efforts at all.
The affect of receiver expertise on perceptions of source credibility and message believability • Austin Sims, Texas Tech University • From a public relations perspective, credibility is one of the most powerful tools possessed by a practitioner or organization. Whether it deals with one or multiple publics, broad or niche, the perception of credibility lends itself to greater persuasiveness and more effective communications (Conger, 1998; Hart, Friedrich, & Brummett, 1983). However, throughout such research, the focus has been almost exclusively on defining attributes of the source that increase credibility and make messages more persuasive, ignoring the possibility that expertise held by the receiver could influence the perception of the message. The question becomes: Can an expert set aside his or her expertise and/or trustworthiness of the source based upon the merits of the information provided? Legislative aides in a large, southwestern state capitol and students from a large southwestern university were surveyed using an experiment embedded within a survey to ascertain if public policy experts perceive sources and persuasive messages differently than non-experts. The experiment measured perceived message and source credibility based upon the expertise of the receiver (expert, non-expert) and sources (lobbyist, citizen, industry executive, and economist/professor) typical of those sources most likely to testify before a committee or speak to legislators and/or staff. The results showed experts’ perceptions were significantly different than non-experts in reviewing message content. Expert receivers were effectively able to separate the message from low-trust, low-expert sources.
Expecting the unexpected: Nonprofit media responses to anti-abortion terrorism • Beth Sundstrom, Rowena Briones and Melissa Janoske, University of Maryland, College Park • This study explored crisis management through the lens of complexity theory to understand six nonprofit organizations’ communication responses to anti-abortion terrorism. Through a qualitative content analysis of 277 press releases, news articles and tweets, findings suggest practical implications for anti-abortion counterterrorism and crisis management, provide opportunities to develop communication counter measures, and further develop complexity theory.
Is Interactivity always worth it? The Effect of Interactivity and Message Tone on Attitude toward Organization • Kang Hoon Sung, University of Florida • This study examined the effect of three independent variables (i.e., Perceived interactivity, Message valence, and Tone of the organization) on people’s attitude toward an organization and their purchase intention, specifically on a social media setting. The findings confirmed that public’s exposure to negative comments about the organization can do harm to the attitude toward organization. However, the findings suggest that increasing interactivity with customers by responding to their opinions can minimize the negative effects of the online comments. In addition, when responding to customer’s opinions, the response should be done in a human voice, (i.e., personal and caring approach) rather than in an organizational voice (i.e., mechanical and routine approach).
The Impact of Corporate Social Performance on Customer Satisfaction: A Cross-Industrial Analysis • Weiting Tao, University of Florida • Corporate social performance (CSP) and customer satisfaction have become two critical areas of focus for corporations. However, their relationship has not yet been explored. Therefore, by analyzing a comprehensive secondary data set obtained from three different databases, this study attempted (1) to explore the relationship between CSP and customer satisfaction, and (2) to discover whether industry type moderates the impact of CSP on customer satisfaction. Furthermore, its contributions to the public relations arena were briefed.
Role perceptions and ethical orientations: An analysis of individual-level influences on ethical aggressiveness of journalists • Sheetal Agarwal • Using the 2007 American Journalist panel survey this study examines how role perceptions influence journalists’ ethical aggressiveness. Factor analyses and scale reliability tests find that the long-standing “ethical aggressiveness” index and the “disseminator” role may need re-evaluation. Using regression analysis and a newly constructed ethical orientation scale I find that journalists with affinity to adversarial and interpreter functions have higher levels of ethical aggressiveness. However, populist mobilizers are less likely to justify ethically questionable practices.
“A Watchdog of Democracy”: State of Media Ethics in Bangladesh • Md. Abu Naser, Southern Illinois University Carbondale; Debashis Aikat • By situating journalism ethics within a larger intellectual context of global communication and social change, this study explores and documents the state of media ethics and journalistic standards in Bangladesh, the theoretical and conceptual development of Bangladeshi media ethics in its many forms. Drawing upon recent studies, meta-analyses of ethical issues and reviews of ethical lapses in Bangladeshi journalism, this study covers three aspects. First, it explicates the media practices and journalism ethics theories as they relate to Bangladeshi media. Second, it provides a thorough assessment of journalism ethics through a comprehensive review of a Jatri (2009) survey of Bangladeshi journalists. Third, it identifies theoretically-grounded approaches to unethical practices in Bangladeshi journalism by exploring a seven-point categorized listing of various instances of ethical lapses in Bangladeshi journalism. In conclusion, this study also identifies the need for a comprehensive code of ethics for Bangladeshi media. In its mission to advance its watchdog role, the Bangladeshi code of ethics should draw upon the evolution of its media ethics as a 20th century phenomenon and seek a sustaining significance in the 21st century digital age that is transforming Bangladesh’s contribution to global communication and social change.
The Ethics of Pinkwashing: Applying Baker and Martinson’s TARES Test to Breast Cancer Cause-Related Marketing Campaigns • Kati Berg, Marquette University; Shannon Walsh • From cars and cosmetics to fast food and toasters, everything seems to be turning up pink lately. But not all pink products benefit breast cancer equally. Some companies take advantage of consumers’ concern about breast cancer and in reality profit from marketing pink products while donating little or nothing to the cause. It’s a process known as pinkwashing. As cause-related marketing (CRM) efforts for breast cancer have risen dramatically in the last decade so has media criticism and consumer backlash. Yet, the ethics of pinkwashing have not yet been examined from a theoretical perspective. Thus, this paper critically analyzes the ethics of such campaigns by applying Baker and Martinson’s (2001) TARES test for ethical persuasion to two CRM campaigns: Mike’s Hard Pink Lemonade and KitchenAid Cook for the Cure. Specifically, we argue that consumers are particularly vulnerable because the persuasive communication used in these CRM campaigns fail to meet the five principles of the TARES test: truthfulness, authenticity, respect, equity, and social responsibility.
Unnamed Sources: A utilitarian exploration of their justification and guidelines for limited use • Matt Duffy, Zayed University; Carrie Freeman, Georgia State University • This article critically examines the practice of unnamed sourcing in journalism. A literature review highlights arguments in favor of and against their use. Then, the authors examine some common examples of anonymous sourcing using the lens of utilitarianism, the ethical model commonly used to justify the practice. We find that few uses of unnamed sourcing can be justified when weighed against diminished credibility and threats to fair, transparent reporting. The authors then suggest specific guidelines for journalists that, if followed, would curb many of the pedestrian uses of unnamed sourcing but still allow for the practice in specific circumstances.
Media Responsibility in a Public Health Crisis: An Analysis of News Coverage of H1N1 “Swine Flu” in One Community • Elizabeth Hindman, Washington State University; Ryan Thomas, Washington State University • This qualitative analysis of news reports regarding the H1N1 virus’ impact on a particular community provides insight into the responsibilities of the media within the realm of health communication. Generally, news media did a poor job presenting accurate, timely and useful information, both to local residents who needed specific information, and to the broader public, which needed a context to interpret events on the forefront of what could have been a national health care disaster.
Journalism’s “Crazy Old Aunt”: Helen Thomas and Paradigm Repair • Elizabeth Hindman, Washington State University; Ryan Thomas, Washington State University • Veteran White House correspondent Helen Thomas abruptly retired in summer 2010 after she gave unscripted remarks widely perceived to be anti-Semitic. This case study applies paradigm repair and attribution theories to explore how mainstream journalists repaired the damage to their profession’s reputation. It concludes, among other things, that they suggested her remarks were caused by senility and that she failed in her obligation to objectivity.
Ethical Pitfalls of Data Digging in Journalism • Jan Leach, Kent State University; Jeremy Gilbert, Medill, Northwestern University • Journalists have been mining publicly available data for decades, but significant changes in presentation means that data journalism is common and this increased use raises new ethical issues. This paper examines the potential for harm when journalists use data mining in reporting. Ethics questions surface about truthfulness, interpretation and potential privacy issues. Authors interview five journalists who frequently use data for journalistic purposes and discuss how they evaluate potential harm when working with data sets.
Agapeistic Ethics and News Coverage of Secular/Religious Conflict • Rick Moore, Boise State University • Agapeistic ethics has received a small amount of attention from scholars interested in how it might be applied to the journalistic profession. This investigation continues that discussion but specifically in regard to how journalists might cover stories that entail religious dimensions. In analyzing the particular case of reporting on legal disputes related to teaching of intelligent design in schools, the paper hopes to shed light on the unique contributions agape can make to media ethics.
Social Responsibility and Tomorrow’s Gatekeepers: How Student Journalists Prioritize News Topics • Sara Netzley, Bradley University • This study examines whether student journalists prioritize news topics that serve social concerns or economic concerns. A nationwide survey asked student journalists to identify which topics they personally preferred as well as which topics they believed were most important for the media to cover. The data suggest that tomorrow’s journalists may have embraced a new theory of the press: the dual responsibility model, in which social and fiscal responsibilities are equally weighed when making editorial decisions. These findings have key implications for the gatekeeping decisions the journalists will make on the job and the type of agenda they might set for the public.
Naming Names: Crime Coverage Rituals in North America, Sweden, and the Neterhlands • Maggie Jones Patterson, Duquesne University; Romayne Smith Fullerton, University of Western Ontario • When a Dutch man killed seven people and injured ten more in an attempt to assassinate the Queen Beatrix, the Dutch Press Agency ANP did not use his name in their stories. This paper examines the ethical practices of journalists in the Netherlands and Sweden, specifically in regard to withholding the names of those accused or convicted of crime, in order to tease out the cultural values these practices reflect. National news stories of great public interest were used as starting points in interviews with Swedish and Dutch journalists and academics. By analyzing these interviews, national codes of ethics, and specific news coverage, the paper examines the reasons behind this respect for criminals’ privacy. The paper argues that the European practices reflect a greater ethic of care than those found in North American journalism. However, these practices are under threat both from the internationalization of news on the Internet and a backlash against immigration in Sweden and the Netherlands.
Ethics and Wartime Self-Censorship: Precedents for a Utilitarian Model in the Digital Age • Michael Sweeney, Ohio University • This paper argues that official government and military censorship have become impossible in the digital age. It offers the World War II model of effective self-censorship by the press, including legal and ethical issues constraining publication decisions, as an example of how cooperation and trust can make the alternative of self-censorship possible. It also addresses the complications posed by the relatively new phenomenon of citizen journalists and the challenges they pose to would-be censors. Finally, it frames the discussion of self-censorship in wartime using a utilitarian model of journalism ethics.
Walter Lippmann’s ethical challenge to the individual • Steve Urbanski, West Virginia University • This paper analyzes in hermeneutic fashion random concepts of the individual from three of philosopher Walter Lippmann’s major works, Liberty and The News, Public Opinion and The Phantom Public. The paper addresses the following: By considering Lippmann’s multi-leveled representation of the individual, 21st century media professionals can become empowered to avoid emotivism and strive toward a more narrative-based form of ethics. The paper compares and contrasts Lippmann’s representation of the individual with John Dewey’s Great Community and Daniel Boorstin’s notion of the pseudo-event.
Teaching Kohlberg’s Stages of Moral Development Through the Movie NETWORK • John Williams, Principia College • Lawrence Kohlberg’s theory of six stages of moral development has been significant to thinking about moral education for half a century and is viewed by many as the definitive description of moral development. Moral development theories describe moral maturity and the steps or stages that one follows to reach this maturity. Contemporary films and literature have been used as mechanisms for stimulating moral development in students. It would make sense that contemporary film could be used to introduce and teaching Kohlberg’s theory of moral development. This paper is a description and assessment of the use of the feature film Network as a vehicle for engaging undergraduate mass communication students with Kohlberg’s theory of moral development. The activity allows students to engage with the theory, attempt to apply it to a fictional situation, offer critiques to the theory, and suggest alternative perspectives.
Identifying Ethical Challenges and Solutions in the Online Coverage of Recruiting High School Athletes • Molly Yanity, Ohio University • The coverage of the recruitment of high school athletes has exploded into a multimillion-dollar industry. That demand has led to a wave of ethical challenges for the web-based publications providing the coverage. This study will reveal ethical challenges in the coverage and solutions for the publications. This multi-method study should help web-based publications draft of a code of ethics. Media covering high school recruiting can use those guidelines to gain and maintain credibility, uphold a high level of ethics, and protect themselves from rules instituted by outside interests.
Carol Burnett Award
Unprofessional, ineffective, and weak: A textual analysis of the portrayal of female journalists on Sports Night • Chad Painter, University of Missouri; Patrick Ferrucci, U of Missouri • This study investigates the portrayal of five female journalists on the Aaron Sorkin television show Sports Night. The women were depicted as acting unprofessionally, displaying motherly qualities, choosing their personal lives over work, being deferential to men for ethical decisions, and showing a lack of sports knowledge compared to the male characters. The researchers use social responsibility theory to suggest why these portrayals were ethically problematic.
Ethical Attitudes of Male and Female Students Concerning Academics and Journalism • Bill Hornaday, Indiana University • Survey data on plagiarism and fabrication – and perceptions about both among journalism students [n=6873] – indicate females harbor more concern about such activity than males. The findings are consistent for academic settings involving student journalists and scenarios involving professional journalists. Regardless of gender, students were more concerned about fabrication and believed professional breaches merit more concern than academic ones. This study draws from an ongoing, longitudinal project launched in 2004 at a large Midwestern university.
Correcting the record: The impact of the digital news age on press accountability • Nicole Joseph, Northwestern University • This study examines changing news practices to determine if, and how, they have been accompanied by changes in journalists’ abilities to enact traditional ethical standards in the newsroom. To illustrate these changes, I explore the use of news corrections as a means for maintaining journalistic accountability in the digital news age. The findings suggest that key attributes of the contemporary news environment can help journalists in their quests for accountability.
Conflicting Agendas: Economics and Social Responsibility in the Press • Jason Laenen, Manship School of Mass Communication at LSU • Many scholars have argued the economic responsibilities of the American (capitalist) press ultimately undermine its social responsibilities. Little attention has been paid, however, to how the press has successfully neglected these duties–while maintaining its special “inviolable” rights provided by the Constitution. This article argues the press has used the tenets of the dominant economic models (liberalism, Keynesianism, and neoliberalism) in three periods of American history to influence and justify its behavior. Implications are discussed.
Is Ideological Coverage On Cable Television an Ethical Journalistic Practice? Duty, Responsibility, and Consequence • Aimee Meader, University of Texas at Austin • Ideological coverage is a journalistic practice that abandons objective ideals in favor of opinionated analysis. Although editorialism has always been evident in American journalism, this practice is becoming more frequent among cable broadcasters as the industry responds to growing economic pressures. This essay examines ideological coverage to determine whether it meets journalistic duties, such as veracity, and if it can facilitate a deliberative democracy. Additionally, the essay outlines guidelines that allow for ethical, ideological reporting.
The real skinny on food in the media: Ethical shortfalls of covering and marketing food to an ever expanding nation • Temple Northup, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill; Meghan Sherrill, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill • Consumers deciding what food to purchase are faced with thousands of options at the typical grocery store. In order to help make decisions, the media can be used as a source of information: from advertisers, marketers, and journalists. Through a series of cases studies, this paper critically analyzes the role of the media in misinforming the public about the healthfulness of certain food, thereby playing a contributing role in the growing obesity epidemic.
“Can We Be Funny?”: The Social Responsibility of Political Humor • Jason Peifer, Saint Louis University • Probing the vague boundaries and constraints commonly placed on humor, this essay considers the responsibilities and duties that can guide political humor. Working within a deontological paradigm, this essay establishes the relevance of ethics within society’s political humor and considers the importance of ethical humor. Moreover, this study points to Christians and Nordenstreng’s model of global social responsibility theory as providing a promising framework for orienting ethical political humor.
The Ethics of the ESRB: Social Responsibility Theory and Video Games • Severin Poirot, University of Oklahoma • The video game industry is a multimillion-dollar industry, which reaches millions of customers a day. While there is a variety of research available on the subject, there is little dealing with the ethics of video game content. Using the social responsibility theory of the press, this paper conducts an ethical analysis of the video game industry. Specifically the history and purpose of the Entertainment Software Rating Board (ESRB), a self-imposed video game rating system, is discussed. Using the principles of the theory the ESRB appears to meet the requirements of social responsibility. Future research is suggested to further explore the ethical implications of video game content.
Neuroethics, Moral Development and Media: An Emotional War Over Reason • Rhema Zlaten • Neurobiology provides a unique perspective to the moral development process of media professionals and challenges current prevalent theories of ethical evolution. Neurological firings initiate an ethical response, which is then carried out and fostered by character development and experience. Several fields, namely psychology and sociology, have utilized this brain data to consider a full range of human behaviors from the inside out. There is a shortage of similar applications to the media and communication fields, and the viewpoint of neuroscience creates a theoretical challenge to the cognitive level theories that drive current media research, particularly to the areas of moral development and normative theory.
Special Call: Methods for Media Ethics Research
Press Apologias: A New Paradigm for the New Transparency? • Sandra Borden, Western Michigan University • This paper examines the requirements for ethical press apologias, defined as attempts to defend credibility when accused of ethical failure. Facing changing transparency expectations, apologists may fail to fully respond to injured stakeholders. Criticisms of CBS News’ flawed report on President Bush’s National Guard service illustrated this problem. Hearit and Borden’s (2005) paradigm for ethical apologia is applied to “RatherGate” to see if and where the paradigmatic criteria fell short. A revised paradigm is proposed.
The Psychology of Plagiarism • Norman Lewis, University of Florida; Bu Zhong, Penn State University • Journalists and writers have often wondered if plagiarism, an ethical taboo, has a psychological element. Two studies to test that informal hypothesis revealed that plagiarists are remarkably similar to their non-copying peers in Big Five personality traits. However, the two groups differ in a scale that measures integrity on a continuum between principles and expediency. The results show that journalistic plagiarism has more in common with a “normal” accident than with a troubled mind.
Dissecting Press Ethics: A Methodological Evaluation of the Discipline • Jenn Burleson Mackay, Virginia Tech • This paper explores trends in journalistic ethics research. The researcher shows areas where additional research is warranted. Most scholars have relied on essays or surveys to study journalistic ethics. While researchers frequently have analyzed newspaper ethics, scholars have failed to thoroughly study broadcast journalism or new media ethics. Researchers have placed little emphasis on studying audience perceptions of journalistic ethics. The author suggests that triangulation would improve the literature in this discipline.
Media of the People, by the People, for the People: Redefining Public Service Broadcasting in Emerging Democracies • Md. Abu Naser, Southern Illinois University Carbondale; Debashis Aikat • Public service broadcasting has faced many challenges during a decline in the last 20 years. Although the crisis of public service broadcasting is global in nature, the problems the PSB institutions face in developing countries and in emerging democracies differ fundamentally from the challenges that the PSB outlets encounter in the Western world. Public service broadcasting in many developing countries remains a government monopoly where the public has no role in the process. In authoritarian political systems, public broadcasting becomes state propaganda that corrupts the whole broadcasting system. Because of the varied nature of the problems facing PSB institutions in developing countries, there is an emerging need for a variety of solutions. In this context, a plan to make public service television in Bangladesh more effective is proposed. This model may be applied to many other emerging democracies in Asia, Africa, East Europe, and Latin America since PSBs of those countries face similar problems.
Is Family Guy E/I Programming? An Analysis of Adult Primetime Animations for Educational Messages. • Mary Katherine Alsip, University of Alabama; Wyley Shreves • Many studies have found that E/I programming may be falling short of the FCC guidelines prompted by the Children’s Television Act of 1990. Adult primetime animations have gained popularity in recent years, especially with adolescent and teen viewers. An analysis of the availability and educational quality of adult animation is made and compared to previous data on E/I programming. Recommendations for the adjustment of FCC guidelines based on this analysis are made.
Digital media, citizenship orientation, and youth political consumerism • German Alvarez, University of Wisconsin-Madison; Matthew Barnidge, University of Wisconsin – Madison; ByungGu Lee, University of Wisconsin-Madison • This study aims to explore how youth online usage patterns and notions of citizenship foster certain forms of political participation – namely political consumerism. Using cross-sectional survey data from a national representative sample of youth, this study offers a unique attempt to uncover the social-psychological predispositions that make up and define citizenship orientation. Specifically, this paper argues that a typology of trust in political institutions and political efficacy are important factors that contribute to citizenship orientation. Placing these social-psychological predispositions within the analytical framework of the communication mediation model, this paper also examines the mediating role of citizenship orientation between online communication and political participation. This study presents evidence that citizenship is evolving, and that new forms are emerging that place emphasis not on institutional politics, but rather on personally meaningful behaviors such as political consumerism. The results generally support the conclusion that citizenship orientation, as defined by the typology of trust and efficacy, is a significant factor mediating the effects of online media on political participation. The findings also highlight the role of online media in the development of citizenship orientation, indicating differential paths of communicative development that lead to different orientations toward citizenship.
Why your grandparents are on Facebook: A survey of uses and gratifications of Facebook by older adults • monica ancu, Univ. of South Florida St. Petersburg • This is a uses and gratifications study looking at why older adults, people aged 45 and older, use Facebook. A survey of 225 respondents reveals that older adults are drawn to Facebook by two primary factors, Mood Management (entertainment and emotional connectivity) and Social Action (express opinions and news, and establish relationships). The most popular activity among our sample was playing games and using other entertainment Facebook apps, followed by browsing friends profiles and photos. Content creation and communication through status updates, wall comments, messages and other types of expression were less popular among this age group, with only a third (roughly 30% of respondents) engaged in such activities. The study discusses additional findings and their implications, and it is one of the very few studies looking at the social networking uses and gratifications of older adults.
The new communication environment and its influence on media credibility • Ashley Anderson, University of Wisconsin-Madison; Peter Ladwig; Dominique BROSSARD, LSC, University of Wisconsin-Madison; Dietram Scheufele; Michael Xenos • How exposure to uncivil discussion in online comments alongside two controversial issues—nuclear energy and nanotechnology—influences media credibility is the focus of this study. Using an experimental design with a representative sample of the American population, we find exposure to uncivil discussion increases perceptions of blog post bias and trust in news media for information on science. Exposure to incivility in blog comments increases trust in online sources for the issue of nuclear energy.
Overweight and unworthy? The role of priming in attractiveness, gender, and credibility • Julie Andsager, University of Iowa; Erin O’Gara; Robert Gutsche Jr, The University of Iowa; James Carviou; Nicholas Yanes, University of Iowa • Obesity is a prevalent health concern in the U.S. Guided by attribution theory and priming, an experiment was conducted to assess attitudes toward attribution of responsibility, attractiveness, and credibility in thin versus overweight individuals. Subjects considered thin individuals more attractive than their overweight counterparts, and reader gender was significantly related to evaluations of attractiveness, particularly when weight was primed with an opinion column. Weight and gender of columnists interacted in perceived credibility. Implications are discussed.
The Effects of Gain and Loss Frames on Perceptions of Racial Inequality • Erin Ash, Penn State University; Mike Schmierbach, Penn State University • Previous content analytic research has examined the extent to which the media frame racial disadvantage in terms of black losses and gains and white losses and gains, finding that news reports are by far most likely to frame disadvantage in terms of what blacks are more likely (than whites) to lose. This study is an empirical test of the effects of racial gain and loss framing. Results reveal loss frames amplified perceptions that the issue was important and due to systematic, institutional causes. No main effects of race were found, but race did interact with the frame manipulation to influence perceived importance and symbolic racism. Further, regression models showed the influence of perceptions of importance, causal attributions, and symbolic racism in predicting support for two proposed remedies to alleviate the inequality.
Exploring News Media Literacy: Developing New Measures of Literacy and Knowledge • Seth Ashley, University of Missouri; Adam Maksl, University of Missouri; Stephanie Craft, University of Missouri • Using a framework previously applied to other areas of media literacy, we developed an attitudinal scale focused specifically on news media literacy and compared that to a knowledge-based index including items about the structure of the U.S. news media system. Among our college student sample, the knowledge-based index was a significant predictor of knowledge about topics in the news, while the attitudinal scale was not. Implications for future work in assessing news literacy are discussed.
Social Media Consumption, Interpersonal Relationship and Issue Awareness • Sungsoo Bang, University of Texas, Austin • This study examines the relationship between social media consumption and issue awareness using South Korea’s 2007 national survey dataset. This study finds that there is a significant and positive relationship between consuming social media, such as Internet community sites, and issue awareness. The findings indicate that frequency of using social media significantly and positively increases issue awareness such as public policy. The finding also indicates using social media for socilability is positively related to issue awareness, which is essential for democracy in terms of political knowledge. Furthermore, the finding shows social media uses mediate the relationship between issue awareness and interpersonal relationship such as political discussion, which demonstrates consuming social media decrease the information gap caused by interpersonal relationship.
The Third-Person Effect Among Mormon College Students: An Examination of Social Distance and Behavioral Outcomes • Stephen Banning, Bradley University; Guy J. Golan, Syracuse University; Sherry Baker, Brigham Young University • This study examines perceived media influence amongst a highly religious sample of Mormon college students and investigates the potential behavioral consequences of these perceptions. While Golan (2002) tested the relationship between religiosity and the third-person effect, no study to date has examined third person perceptions and their behavioral consequences amongst religious adherents. Consistent with previous research, our study found robust support for the perceptual hypothesis of the third-person effect and support for third-person perceptions as key predictors of censorship and government regulation of the mainstream news media.
The Impact of the BP Oil Spill on Views about Nuclear Energy: A Natural Experiment • John Besley, University of South Carolina; Sang Hwa Oh, University of South Carolina • A natural experiment involving a survey about nuclear energy conducted just before the BP oil spill and followed-up after the oil spill showed that self-reported attention to the oil spill interacted with environmental attitudes to produce higher perceived risks and less overall support for nuclear risk management policies. An experimental manipulation that involved asking half of the respondents about the oil spill, prior to asking about nuclear energy, resulted in more negative views about nuclear energy. The research speaks to climate-change-related debate about the value of arguing in favor of one energy technology through the critique of another.
What Viewers Want: Assessing the impact of host bias on perceptions of credibility in political talk shows • Leticia Bode; Emily Vraga, University of Wisconsin-Madison; Magda Konieczna; Michael Mirer; German Alvarez, University of Wisconsin-Madison; Courtney Johnson • The new media environment, and particularly cable news, has recently embraced a partisan style of journalism. It is unclear how subtle changes in the way this style is adopted affect how viewers perceive and evaluate the journalists and programs in question. To consider this question, we employ a 3×3 experimental design. Using professional actors and experienced producers and editors, we imitated a pundit-based political talk show, altering whether the host was neutral, conservative, or liberal, and whether he gave equal time to both sides of the argument, or unevenly distributed time either in favor of the liberal or the conservative guest. We expected that both overt bias and the more subtle bias of allowing one side more time would both factor into evaluations of the host and the program’s credibility, and this expectation is supported by the data. Moreover, their effects are contingent upon the partisan identity of the viewer, and there is an important interaction between the two types of bias. Our findings have significant implications for models of journalism in the cable news era.
Factors Affecting Journalistic Adherence to the Protest Paradigm: The Influence of Protest Goals and Tactics • Michael Boyle, West Chester University; Cory Armstrong, University of Florida; Doug McLeod • A recent spate of protest activity across the globe has reinforced the important role that news media play in covering protesters. Research under the protest paradigm has shown that not all protest groups are treated equally and has consistently found that more deviant protest groups receive more critical coverage. However, our understanding of what factors predict when the protest paradigm will be enacted and when it will not needs further exploration and clarification. This study considers this issue using a geographically diverse set of newspapers to consider the distinct role of a protest group goals and their tactics as well as the location and issue being protested. The findings indicate that the tactics employed by protest groups have a significant bearing on how they are treated trumping the influence of goals. Further, it is clear that location and issue indirectly influence coverage by influencing group tactics.
Mirror, Mirror on the Screen…The Facebook-Narcissism Connection • Jennifer Braddock, University of Florida • Narcissism is an issue of increasing concern among current generations in the United States. Young individuals are also more connected than ever, particularly via the social networking site Facebook. This study uncovers several relationships between narcissism as determined by responses to the NPI-16 and Facebook use based on Uses and Gratifications Theory. The data suggest that narcissistic individuals look to Facebook to support their self-promoting tendencies.
Everything is Not What It Seems: An Examination of Sitcom Sibling Interactions • Nancy Bressler • Real-life sibling interactions may not be as simplistic as the portrayals on television sitcoms. Yet, real-life siblings may still identify with these characters. This study examined popular family sitcoms during the 2009-2010 television season using a quantitative content analysis. The valence of interactions, types of interactions, sources of conflict, and overall outcomes were all investigated. These results were further correlated with each sitcom to determine if there was a pattern of sibling interactions.
The pregnancy of “”Skinny Moms”" for Sale!: Representations of Celebrity Moms’ Pregnancies in Korean Online Media” Jiyoung Chae • This paper explores the representations of celebrity mothers’ pregnancies in Korean online media. An analysis of articles dealing with ten Korean female celebrities’ pregnancies revealed that the celebrities’ thinness during and just after pregnancy are highly emphasized by the media and those celebrities are called “”skinny moms.” In skinny mom discourses, celebrity moms are portrayed as a woman who has both ideal beauty and motherhood. These representations imply that women should be thin and beautiful even during their pregnancies. Also, what the celebrities consume to maintain the skinny body is the center of attention. As a result, the celebrities’ bodies are commodified and objectified by the media representations, which is for women who aspire to have a thin and beautiful pregnancy as they do.
Third-person perception and health beliefs • John Chapin, Penn State • Purpose: To study third-person perception (TPP) within the context of a public health issue (intimate partner violence) and to explore theoretical linkage between TPP and the health belief model. Methods: Survey of 316 medical professionals Results: Medical professionals exhibit TPP, believing they are less influenced than patients by media depictions of IPV. In terms of the Health Belief Model, one element, perceived susceptibility, emerged as a predictor of TPP. Conclusions: There is a rich area of health-related messages yet to be explored in future research.
Adolescents’ Varying Responses to Pro-Health Messages After Media Literacy Training • Yi-Chun Chen • With an increasing attention to entertainment-education (EE) as an integral part of health campaigns, children cultivated in more than two decades of media literacy (ML) movements might view EE differently. This paper thus asks: Will different approaches to media literacy impede the effectiveness of entertainment-education? A total of 105 adolescents participated in a 2 (sex: female and male) X 3 (ML approaches: negative mediation, positive mediation and control) posttest only with a control group quasi-experimental design. Results showed that a positive evaluative not only had positive influences on key decision-making process concerning alcohol use but also heightened the effectiveness of pro-health entertainment. Significant sex effects also indicated that female adolescents may be more receptive to the educational aspect of health-focused entertainment-education than their counterparts. Findings suggest that media literacy could enhance pro-health entertainment and has the potential to be employed simultaneously in health campaigns to improve adolescents’ health.
Examining the Conjoint Influence of Parental Mediation and Media Literacy in Substance Use • Yi-Chun Chen; Erica Austin • Prior research has established significant factors that impact individuals’ substance use behavior, including parental communication strategies and their level of media literacy. This study bridges the gap between parental mediation and media literacy in relation to substance use. Two separate cross-sectional Internet studies with each survey focusing on either alcohol (n=347) or tobacco use behavior (n=291) were conducted at a large mid-Atlantic university (N=638). Mediation and coviewing had distinctive relationships with media literacy, such that coviewing predicted less advertising skepticism but more critical thinking, negative mediation consistently associated with higher levels of media literacy, rulemaking associated with lower levels of critical thinking, and positive mediation associated with lower levels of advertising skepticism but was unrelated to critical thinking. The results show that parental communication influences can be traced into early adulthood and that strategies which cultivate independent, analytical message processing have indirect protective effects but passive strategies can increase risk.
The Indirect Effect of Media on Political Participation: How Media Promote Political Participation • Doo-Hun Choi, University of Wisconsin – Madison • Analyzing data from the 2008 ANES, the study explored the role of media use in influencing political participation. Particularly, the research examined (a) the relationship between media use and interpersonal trust and (b) the connection between interpersonal trust and political participation. The findings support the thesis that interpersonal trust was positively related to political participation. Moreover, Internet use promoted interpersonal trust, whereas national television viewing was negatively associated with interpersonal trust. Taken together, the findings suggest that the Internet may enhance political participation at least indirectly, an effect mediated by interpersonal trust. Results and implications are discussed in greater detail.
The effect of geographical distance and intensity of online news on user emotion, personal relevance, and perceived intensity • EunRyung Chong, University of Maryland; Ronald Yaros, University of Maryland; John Newhagen • More than two decades of online news environment invited reconsideration of the traditional journalistic definition of “”proximity.” Emotional or virtual proximity of users was examined by 2 (geographical distance) X 2(news story intensity) within subject factorial design online survey experiment. Perceived news intensity and perceived personal relevance to the online news were measured. Findings indicate that emotional proximity is independent from geographical proximity. Virtual proximity, however, illustrates strong association with the geographical proximity. In “”near”" story, users appeared more strongly to be involved in low intensive story than high intensive story, while in “”far”" story, high intensive story more affected users than low intensive story. The implication of findings for editorial direction of online news is suggested.
Packaging Inspiration: Al Qaeda’s Digital Magazine Strategy and Popular Culture Resonance • Susan Currie Sivek, Mass Communication, Linfield College • This study examines the function and content of Inspire magazine, an English-language digital publication created by Al Qaeda of the Arabian Peninsula with the goal of recruiting Western Muslims to participate in jihad. The selection of the digital magazine medium, as well as the resonance of the content with Western popular culture narratives and tropes, are considered in light of existing research on magazines, social movements, and Islamic terrorism.
The effect of narrative messages on young adults’ response to a health message about Hepatitis C • Michelle Dangiuro-Baker, Penn State University; Fuyuan Shen, Ad Division • Designing health messages for young adults can be challenging, both in getting the attention of young adults and persuading them to adopt safe health behaviors. This study, guided by narrative transportation theory, explored the role that story formats play in immersing young adults into a health message and persuading them to adopt a specific health behavior. An experiment (N=125) was conducted featuring public service announcements (PSAs) regarding the dangers of the Hepatitis C Virus that utilized a 2 (message format: factual vs. narrative) X 2 (message valence: positive vs. negative) factorial design. Results indicated an interaction between valence and message format, with negatively valenced narratives leading to greater persuasion and transportation than positively valenced messages and factual messages when controlling for perceived susceptibility to Hepatitis C. Transportation was shown to fully mediate the relationship between the negative-narrative message and persuasion. However, neither message format nor valence significantly impacted behavior intention, a possible effect of participants’ low perceived susceptibility to contracting the Hepatitis C Virus.
Adding Depth to the Relationship Between Reading Skills and Television Viewing • Steven Dick, Picard Center for Child Development and Lifelong Learning; William Davie; Betsy Bryan Miguez • It has been long accepted that there is a negative correlation between excessive television and academic performance, however, with so many children watching at least some television each day, it is worth considering the effects of more limited viewing. This project performs a secondary analysis on a nationally representative (NAEP) dataset of more than 26,000 students to evaluate the relationship between television viewing and academic achievement. Findings include support for the positive effect of moderate viewing among certain young demographic groups (males, students in poverty, Hispanics, and English language learners), which in this study contrasts with the diminishing return of the viewing benefit as students matured.
Partisan Balance and Bias in TV Network Coverage of the 2000, 2004 and 2008 Presidential Elections • Arvind Diddi, State University of New York at Oswego; Frederick Fico; Geri Alumit Zeldes, Michigan State University • This study did a content analysis of television broadcast network news in the 2008 presidential election to examine the partisan balance and bias and compared it with the 2000 and 2004 presidential elections. The study replicated the partisan balance and bias measures used in similar studies in 2000 and 2004 elections. The study findings were comparable to the general conclusions of the earlier research. However, the 2008 data indicated that though the broadcast news networks were largely balanced in their coverage they showed a slight Republican tilt in their coverage.
Money Mothers and Mediators: A Thematic Analysis of Say Yes to the Dress • Katherine Eaves, University of Oklahoma • The explosive growth of the now multi-billion dollar a year wedding industry has been fueled in part by a dramatic increase in the number of wedding-focused television programs. These programs, much like other forms of bridal-focused media, present women with images, ideas and fantasies about what their weddings should be like, look like and feel like. Using a thematic analysis method and social constructionist theoretical perspective, this study identifies three primary thematic elements in the wedding-focused program Say Yes to the Dress; the role of the mother, financial considerations (or lack thereof), and the positioning of the bridal consultant as a mediator.
Understanding News Preferences in a “Post-Broadcast Democracy”: A Content-by-Style Typology for the Contemporary News Environment • Stephanie Edgerly, University of Wisconsin-Madison; Kjerstin Thorson, University of Southern California; Emily Vraga, University of Wisconsin-Madison; Dhavan Shah • This study develops a 2×2 news typology accounting for an individual’s orientation toward content (news vs. entertainment) and style (factual reports vs. pundit opinions). Findings from cross-sectional and panel data reveal that our typology predicts distinct patterns of news consumption during the 2008 election. Specifically, we predict selection of cable news outlets, soft news programs, and late-night talk shows. Our results also shed light on knowledge change during the 2008 election season.
In Deepwater: A comparative analysis of The New York Times and The Guardian’s coverage of the BP oil spill • Patrick Ferrucci, U of Missouri • This paper offers a comparative analysis of news coverage by The New York Times and The Guardian during the ten days following the BP oil spill of April 20, 2010. Ethnographic content analysis examines the coverage, and institutional analysis examines the outlets in broader cultural and economic contexts. The paper concludes that despite what existing literature would suggest, The New York Times better embodied the spirit of journalism through a diversity of sources and ideas.
The green editorial debate: A comparison of the framing of environmental issues in the Columbia Daily Tribune and St. Louis Post-Dispatch • Maria Garcia, University of Missouri-Columbia; Guy J. Golan, Syracuse University; Jeffrey Joe Pe-Aguirre, University of Central Arkansas • The current study compares how environmental issues were framed in the editorial section of a small community newspaper, Columbia Daily Tribune, and metropolitan newspaper, St. Louis Post-Dispatch. The results of a content analysis point to significant differences in the framing strategies, news values and overall valence in coverage between the two newspapers. The central function of community journalism in relationship to the formation of civic participation and public opinion are discussed.
Expressing opinions on GLBT tolerance using Facebook: A modern application of the spiral of silence • Sherice Gearhart, Texas Tech University; Weiwu Zhang, Texas Tech University • The present study examined the role of the spiral of silence, in the online environment of the social network site (SNS) Facebook as it is used to express opinions on tolerance for gays and lesbians. Using an experimental manipulation, respondents were presented with either a friendly or hostile hypothetical scenario concerning gay-bullying, a social issue has recently garnered increased media attention and impacts the lives of people across the country. Issue importance and willingness to self-censor indicated the presence of the spiral of silence, so did other individual level variables such as age, gender, media and level of social tolerance. However, perceived climates of opinion and attitude certainty were not found to have any significant impact. Findings suggest that the spiral of silence does, in fact, exist in the online context of Facebook, an SNS based upon relationships anchored to offline others. Theoretical and practical implications of this study are discussed.
Prevalence and Context of Verbal Aggression in Children’s Television Programming • jack glascock, Illinois State University • This study examines the prevalence and context of verbal aggression in children’s television programming. In all 256 episodes of children’s programming from cable and broadcast television were examined. About 18 acts of verbal aggression were found, most of which were insults (49.2%) and name calling (24%). A majority of the acts were depicted as externally motivated, justified and followed by either positive or neutral reinforcement. Proportionately, male and female characters were equally verbally aggressive however female characters were more likely than expected to be victims. Social learning implications are discussed.
Perceived H1N1 flu vaccine efficacy and likelihood of vaccine uptake: Assessing the influences of mass media and risk perception • Gang (Kevin) Han, Iowa State University; Kejun Chu; Guolin Shen • This study examines the influences on college students’ perceived efficacy of H1N1 flu vaccine that are exerted by mass media and risk perception, along with personal experience, interpersonal communication and self-efficacy. Respondents’ perceived likelihood of receiving flu shot is also assessed at personal, group, societal and global levels. An online survey was conducted and 1321 completed questionnaires were analyzed. Findings suggest that mass media and risk perception significantly affect respondents’ perceptions of H1N1 flu shot effectiveness, where exposure to both traditional and new media also moderates the influence of risk judgment. In addition, findings reveal an “”mounting pattern”" of perceived likelihood of flu vaccine reception across these levels, wherein respondents perceive that taking H1N1 flu vaccine is more likely for mass collectives than for themselves or family.
Knowledge Gaps, Belief Gaps, and Public Opinion about Health Care Reform • Doug Hindman, Washington State University • Partisanship and political polarization has become the norm in national, and increasingly, local politics. The passage of the health care overhaul legislation, the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, signed into law in March 2010, was no exception to the trend towards greater levels of partisanship; the legislation passed without a single Republican vote. This study raises an additional issue thought to be associated with polarization and partisanship: the distribution among the public of beliefs regarding heavily covered political controversies. Specifically, this study tests hypotheses regarding the distribution of beliefs and knowledge about health care reform. Hypotheses are formulated that seek to extend the knowledge gap to account for the partisan environment. The belief gap hypothesis suggests that in an era of political polarization, self identification along ideological or political party dimensions would be the better predictor of knowledge and beliefs about politically contested issues than would one’s educational level. Findings showed that gaps in beliefs and knowledge regarding health care reform between Republicans and Democrats grew, and traditional knowledge gaps, based on educational level, disappeared. Attention to cable TV news narrowed gaps in knowledge among party identifiers. Findings are discussed in terms of improving news coverage of partisan debates.
Clash of coverage: An analysis of the cultural framing components of U.S. newspaper reporting on the 2011 protests in Bahrain • Jennifer Hoewe, The Pennsylvania State University; Brian J. Bowe, Michigan State University • Samuel Huntington’s clash of civilizations paradigm was established after the Cold War to explain an emerging new world order and was utilized in the cultural framing hypothesis’ explanation of U.S. news coverage of conflicts. Through content analysis of three major U.S. newspapers’ coverage of the 2011 protests in Bahrain, this study uses the cultural framing hypothesis to determine if a clash of civilizations shaped news stories. The results largely support the hypothesis and Huntington’s paradigm.
Information Surplus, Information Overload, and Multiplatform News Consumption: Updating Considerations of Influential Factors • Avery Holton, University of Texas-Austin; H. Iris Chyi, University of Texas at Austin • Information surplus tends to trigger psychological effects on news and information consumers, causing information overload. This study explored novel areas of information overload, specifically with regards to news and information, and empirically examined factors associated with the degree of information overload as well as how people perceive the amount of time required to consume information across a broad spectrum of news and information platforms. The findings revealed that the majority of news and information consumers today feel overloaded with the amount of news they are confronted with. Gender, news interest, and the use of specific news platforms and outlets predict the degree of information overload. Additionally, consumers distinguish multiple news platforms by the perceived time required to consume news items on those platforms – older platforms are perceived as more time-consuming than newer platforms. Implications for media psychology, news consumption, and evolving production models are discussed.
Great Planes: National Media’s Understanding of America’s “”Flyover Country”" • Brian Hough, Ohio University • This content analysis investigates topical and spatial understandings of the American Great Plains by national media—specifically USA Today, The Wall Street Journal, and The New York Times. The study finds (1) the Plains are sparsely mentioned in these media,; (2) stories involving economics and politics are the most common topics; (3) North Dakota and South Dakota are the most frequently mentioned states; (4) a high occurrence of depopulation articles in The New York Times.
The Rise of Specialists, the Fall of Generalists • S. Mo Jang • The present study revisits the question as to whether U.S. citizens are information specialists or information generalists. Although the literature has presented mixed views, the study provides evidence that the changing information environment facilitates the growth of specialists. Using a national survey (n=1208), the study found that individuals seek issue-specific knowledge driven by their perceived issue importance rather than by general education, and that this trend was saliently observed among those who relied on the Internet.
Framing National and International Disasters: An Analysis of Media and Actor Frames of Hurricane Katrina and Haiti Earthquake • Sun Ho Jeong, University of Texas at Austin • Using frames as organizing principles to construct meanings of an abstract concept of disaster, media and actor frames of Hurricane Katrina and Haiti Earthquake were examined in three stages upon development of the post-disaster relief: (a) Call for humanitarian assistance; (b) New Orleans under anarchy and hopelessness versus Haiti under scrutiny and hope; and (c) Katrina effects. Considering frames as cultural structures involving different social actors, newspapers, press releases and statements were analyzed.
Conflict Frames, Media Bias, and Power Distribution: Title IX as a Longitudinal Social-Movement Case • Kent Kaiser, Northwestern College • Through examination of Title IX as a social-movement case, this paper identified frames advocating for and against Title IX and used content analyses to discover the faithfulness with which conflict frames were transferred from the legal and legislative debate into newspapers. The study finds that the newspapers were generally faithful to the legal and legislative debate but demonstrated some bias in favor of social reform, thereby challenging hegemonic ideas and empowering the women’s rights movement.
Does Online News Reading and Sharing Shape Perceptions of Online Deliberation?: Exploring the Structural Relationships among Motives and Behaviors of Online News Consumption and Online Deliberation Perceptions • Hyunjin Kang, The Pennsylvania State University; Jeong Kyu Lee, ClearWay Minnesota; Kyung Han You, The Pennsylvania State University; Seoyeon Lee • With the rapid development of interactive communication technology, the Internet is a major source of news and also plays an important role in connecting individual members of society. However, Internet users may have different perspectives on whether or not the Internet positively functions as a medium for civic deliberation. Because being exposed to information on public affairs is a crucial step for one’s civic engagement, this study focuses on the effects of online news consumption motives and behaviors on one’s perceptions of online deliberation. The study (N = 998) explores structural relationships between online news consumption motives, behaviors—elaborative reading and sharing—and perceptions of online deliberation. The study finds significant relationships between online news consumption motives and elaborative news reading and sharing behaviors, but only elaborative reading behavior had a significant effect on one’s perceptions of online deliberation. The implications of these findings are discussed.
The Digital Age, Future of News and Implications for the MDM • Andrew Kennis • This paper is an attempt to make sense out of the many questions surrounding news media performance and its inadequacies. It does this by first synthesizing two critical models of news analysis and applying their respective strengths toward the other’s weaknesses. The synthesis is based on the propaganda (Herman and Chomsky 1988, 2002, 2008) and indexing models (Bennett 1990; Bennett, Livingston and Lawrence 2007). The new digital era of journalism, conventional wisdom on the topic asserts, has significantly usurped prior tendencies in terms of the domination of news themes and sources by government and corporate officials. Scholarly inquiries and findings into the matter, however, have showed that this is simply not the case (Livingston and Bennett 2003; Livingston and Van Belle 2005) and that an era of hyper-commercialism is mostly to blame for a lack of news media independence (McChesney 2000, 2004, 2008). While it cannot be denied that new media and online-based news outlets are increasingly producing exceptional content, the fact remains that the reach of this content is widely dispersed and its subsequent influence is also dispersed, disparate and lacking in comparison to the traditional outlets. Most importantly, it is widely acknowledged that the leading agenda-setting and U.S.-based print sources – the New York Times and Washington Post – are by-and-large responsible for an overwhelming amount of news content, which are in turn re-sourced by alternative news sources in broadcast and online-based media.
How Scholars Have Responded to Social Media Phenomena in Advertising, Communication, Marketing and Public Relations Research From 1997-2010 • Hyoungkoo Khang, University of Alabama; Eyun-Jung Ki, The University of Alabama; Lan Ye, The University of Alabama • Drawing upon the social media phenomena in both practical and academic arenas, this study explored patterns and trends of social media research over the past 14 years across the four disciplines of advertising, communication, marketing, and public relations. As a whole, these findings exhibit a definite increasing trend in terms of the number of social media-related studies published in the four disciplines. This indicates that social media has gained incremental attention among scholars, and in turn, they have been responding and keeping pace well with the increased usage and impact of this new medium. In addition, we suggest that future scholarly endeavors emphasize the prospective aspects of social media, foreseeing applications and technological progress, and elaborating theories.
Attention, Explicated: A Psychological Approach to Mass Communication” Gyoung Kim • In academia, the term “”attention”" has been defined, explicated, and studied intensively in cognitive psychology and neuroscience. However, this term is also an important factor to analyze and explain mass communication effects. This study explains and explores the mass communication theories, mass media effects, and types of a media audience in terms of media audience’s psychological cognitive process of attention and suggests a new definition of attention for studying mass communication effects.
Does Disagreement Mitigate Polarization? How Partisan Media Use and Disagreement Affect Political Polarization • Yonghwan Kim; Hsuan-Ting Chen • This study examines how partisan selective exposure and interpersonal political disagreement influence political polarization. Using data from the 2008 National Annenberg Election Study, this study first investigates the association between individuals’ selective partisan media use and attitude polarization. This study also examines whether disagreement in political discussion networks moderate the association between partisan selective exposure and polarization. As expected, individuals’ partisan selective media use leads to political polarization. Results further show that exposure to disagreement attenuates the association between partisan media use and polarization.
How Self-Other Perceptions and Media Affordances Are Related to News Use by College Students • Esther Thorson, University of Missouri; Eunjin (Anna) Kim, University of Missouri; Margaret Duffy, University of Missouri School of Journalism • This study examines how the Self-Other variables and preferences for certain kinds of Media Affordances affect college students’ news use and importance. Guided by the Media Choice Model (Thorson & Duffy, 2005) we suspected that three Self-Other variables fundamental to how people process information about themselves, others, and the relationship between the two would prove to be individual differences important to media choice. We also expected that four Media Affordances that we found college students value would predict their news use and importance. Finally, we suspected that the media features would mediate the effects of the self-other variables on news use and importance. This study discovered that the sSelf-Other variables and Media Affordances significantly predicted news use and News Importance. Also, it is revealed that Media AffordanceS successfully mediated the effect of the Self-Other variables on news use and News Importance.
Local 2.0: New Media, Advertising and the Emerging Local Web • Kathleen Kuehn • This paper offers an exploration of the local 2.0 technologies which are leading to the popularity of a “”local web”" in which place-based communities are being harnessed by start-ups and advertisers alike in order to capitalize on the untapped markets of local communities. However, new media research needs to consider this shift, as well as the implications resulting from it in regards to how it will impact social, cultural and political economic relationships. While there is much potential for the local web, there is equally many potential problems. Future media research must account for both.
Investigative Reporting and Local Power • Gerry Lanosga • This analysis of Pulitzer Prize nominations reveals a complex and varied relationship between investigative reporters and contingent groups of elites in which both sides have substantive roles to play as catalysts for societal change. Investigative journalism, though entangled with power in strikingly intimate ways, plays a role as referee among competing power groups, periodically challenging components of the social system, if only in the interest of keeping the system operating by its own rules.
Female Journalists Contribute to Greater Transparency and Accountability on Twitter • Dominic Lasorsa • Female and male journalists were found to differ little in their use of the microblog medium Twitter, including their general presence on Twitter and the topics about which they tweeted. Furthermore, female and male j-tweeters were no different in the extent to which they engaged in two characteristic microblogging activities that contest major journalistic norms, expressing opinions and admitting nonprofessionals to participate in the news production process. However, regarding a third journalistic norm—transparency—female journalists provided significantly more openness and accountability in their tweets than did male journalists. Supporting a socialization perspective, it was found that female journalists working for larger, national, prestigious news media were less likely than those working for other less “”elite”" news media to express opinions in their tweets, to allow nonprofessional participation in the news they produce on Twitter, and to provide evidence of transparency and accountability in their tweeting. The implications of these findings are considered.
Persuasive Appeals in Television Food Advertising for Children: A Comparative Analysis of Low-Nutrition vs. General-Nutrition Food Advertisements in the U.S • Hyuk Soo Kim, The University of Alabama; Doohwang Lee, University of Alabama; Yangsun Hong • Television food advertisements targeted to children were content analyzed. Using Elaboration likelihood model (ELM) of persuasion, the study identified the various advertising appeals and conceptualized as central and peripheral cues. Further, it investigated how advertising appeals of central and peripheral cues were differently associated with low-nutrition food and general-nutrition food commercials. Overall, the findings suggest that general-nutrition food commercials employed persuasive appeals of central cues more frequently than low-nutrition food commercials. Theoretical, practical and regulatory implications are discussed in the discussion section.
The Impact of Contradicting Media Messages on Political Perceptions: The Case of a Partisan Dispute in Korea over Lifting Ban on U.S. Beef Imports • ByungGu Lee, University of Wisconsin-Madison • Since mass media is the primary channel through which average citizens are informed of political issues, the way a political affair is described by the media plays an important role in shaping people’s political attitudes. Although its impact has largely been supported by many experimental results, not many studies have tapped into real world issues and very few have tried to answer the question of whether a frame can survive in a competitive environment. By utilizing a natural experiment setting where news frames from different types of media outlets contradicted each other, this study examined whether the impact of countervailing frames can persist in competitive environments to affect citizens’ political evaluations. Along with the impact of news media frames, the influence of perceived responsibility on political judgments (Iyengar, 1989, 1990; Iyengar & Kinder, 1987) was taken into account as well. The results show that media messages with conflicting frames failed to influence citizens’ political evaluations, cancelling out each other’s effect. Instead, the evidence suggests that political perceptions were largely shaped by such factors as the locus of causal responsibility and policy evaluations, which, in turn, were affected by one’s political ideology. Implications for framing research and suggestions for future research were discussed.
Portrayals of Eating and Drinking in Popular American TV Programs: Comparison between Scripted and Non-scripted Shows • Moon Lee, University of Florida; Lauren Gispanski • The purpose of this study was to investigate the portrayals of eating behaviors in popular American TV programs as they pertain to popular scripted television programs as well as non-scripted or “”reality”" television shows. Through a content analysis of 95 episodes, we also measured the prevalence and nature of alcohol consumption that accompanied depictions of eating behaviors in 461 scenes. Regarding the type of food, various foods were portrayed in popular American TV programs of which only 6% of foods portrayed were healthy (e.g. low in calories and fat content such as fruits, vegetables, protein bars, etc.). In addition to food consumption, approximately half of eating scenes were either accompanied by alcohol or solely contained alcoholic beverages, suggesting that popular American TV programs portray alcohol and drinking as a predominant feature of society. Implications as well as limitations of the study are also discussed in the paper.
The Effect of Editorials on Perceptions of Adolescent Marijuana Use as a Societal Problem • Stacey Hust, Washington State University; Ming Lei • News reports have influenced adolescents’ perceptions of the risks of marijuana use, so media advocacy could be a useful strategy to bring awareness to this public health issue. The current study informs our understanding of the media advocacy strategy by experimentally testing the effectiveness of editorials aimed at framing adolescent marijuana use as a societal problem. The results indicate the effects of editorials with a societal frame differed based on participants’ decision to use marijuana.
The Influence of News Media on Optimism about Retrospective and Prospective Economic Issues as Sources of Social Capital: Tracing the Effects by A Path Model • Yung-I Liu • This study helps understand media’s conditional effects by investigating the role of mediating attitudinal factors in explaining the relationships between media, and civic attitudes and behaviors. This study attempts to understand the mechanism by which media could influence how much optimism people have in perceiving economic issues, which accordingly could influence people’s possession of social capital. Analyzing the 2004 ANES data by using the structural equation modeling approach, this study finds a path model that links news media to various dimensions of social capital through people’s optimism about economic issues. The findings suggest that news media could influence people’s possession of social capital indirectly through influencing people’s optimism about issues that are highly important and relevant to their lives.
What motivates online disagreement expression?: Examining the influence of verbal persuasion, vicarious experience, mastery experience and self-efficacy • xudong liu, Southern Illinois University Carbondale; Aaron Veenstra, Southern Illinois University Carbondale • A 2_2 experimental design explored factors influencing self-efficacy and the willingness to express disagreement online. The study found that self-efficacy is a salient factor in predicting whether people will choose to present different opinions on the online forum where the majority discussants opposes to their opinions. Mastery experience and verbal persuasion positively predict self-efficacy, while vicarious experience has no effects on self-efficacy concerning online disagreement expression. Overall, this study responded to the call to explore the reference group’s influence on online discussion and partially confirmed online peer discussants’ motivation role in discussion involvement.
When Undesirable Media Message Looms: Possibility of Event Occurrence, General Self-efficacy, and Third Person Perception • xudong liu, Southern Illinois University Carbondale • This paper examines the influence of perceived possibility of event occurrence, self-efficacy, and general self-efficacy on third person perception concerning exposure to media coverage of H1N1 swine flu pandemic. Social cognitive theory and construal level theory guided the rationale. Results from a survey showed that people’s concern of disease spreading likelihood in the local community positively predicts perceived media effects on self and on others, but its impact on self-evaluation of media effect is more salient, and thus negatively influence third person perception. People confident in pretending oneself tend to be less affected by media coverage of the pandemic and demonstrate more third person perception. General self-efficacy also positively influences third person perception.
Who in the World? People, Content, and Systemic Bias on Wikipedia • Randall Livingstone, University of Oregon • This research investigates systemic bias on the English-language Wikipedia by focusing in on the representation of persons and people. The work of a particular group of editors devoted to combating bias, WikiProject:Countering System Bias, over a bounded number of edits (n = 2,204) is considered and compared to a sample (n = 2,588) drawn from the general population of editors. Statistical analysis and geographic mapping reveal successes and shortcomings of this group’s work.
So, Who’s an American Now? A Discourse Analysis of CNN.com’s Readers’ Comments on the Fort Hood Shooting and “”Jihad Jane”" Indictment • Jaime Loke, University of Oklahoma; Tania Cantrell Rosas-Moreno, Loyola University • This study discursively analyzes 2,782 readers’ comments from CNN.com’s stories of the Food Hood shooting and the indictment of “”Jihad Jane.” The analysis illuminates society’s perceptions of what it means to be American. It also helps make sense of how criminals sharing similar religious background but different race and gender are discussed. Additional research on the complex relationship among religion, race and gender within the private-public space of online news readers’ comments is called for.
The ecology of news: Tracking emerging media forms • Wilson Lowrey • Low barriers to entry, failed business models, and a cultural decentering of mainstream journalism have sparked unprecedented variation in news forms and practices, and yet relatively little attention has been paid to the ongoing processes by which such innovations emerge, develop, persist, change and fade. These complex dynamics need more systematic study. This paper proposes a model that offers explanation for the evolution of news forms. The model is informed by sociological scholarship on organization ecology and by concepts from media sociology and media economics. The paper reports findings on an empirical test of aspects of the model, examining the case of “”health blogs”" – blogs that focus on health, medicine and fitness. Support for aspects of the model was found: overall, the health blog population is becoming more institutionalized and formalized, more specialized, and the growth rate more slow and stable.
Why Politics?: Young People’s Motivations for Facebook Political Engagement • Timothy Macafee; Karyn Riddle, University of Wisconsin – Madison • This study uses a convenience sample of undergraduate students to explore the motivations for engaging in three Facebook political activities and probes the extent to which political predispositions predict the motivations for engaging in these political activities. Results reveal that motivations for Facebook political activity vary by activity; the extent to which political predispositions influence motivations to participate politically reveal few patterns, suggesting young people’s political tendencies influence motivations for Facebook political engagement differently.
Less Objectivity Please: Teen preferences for news information • Regina Marchi, Rutgers University • This paper contributes to the ongoing discussion about news consumption among young people, examining news behaviors and attitudes of teenagers. Based on one-on-one interviews and focus group discussions with 61 racially diverse high school students, this paper examines how adolescents become informed about current events and why they prefer certain news media formats to others. The results reveal not only changing ways that news information is being accessed and new attitudes regarding what it means to be informed, but also a preference among youth for opinionated rather than objective news.
Understanding the Internet’s Impact on International Knowledge and Engagement: News Attention, Social Media Use, and the 2010 Haitian Earthquake • Jason A. Martin, Indiana University School of Journalism • Relatively little is known about how Internet media use and other motivational factors are associated with outcomes such as knowledge of international news and involvement. Recent research suggests that attention and interaction with foreign affairs news is one path to closing the knowledge gap in this context. The acquisition of foreign affairs knowledge also has implications for individuals’ abilities to have a broader worldview, to hold accurate public opinions about foreign nations, to facilitate a greater since of global belonging, and to get involved with international events. This paper examines the relationship of media use, foreign affairs political knowledge, and international involvement. A nationally representative survey conducted shortly after the 2010 Haitian earthquake produced measures of demographics, news media use, social media use, international engagement, general political knowledge, and foreign affairs knowledge. Statistical analysis found that news exposure, news attention and various types of social media use produced significant independent positive associations with international news knowledge and international involvement after demographic controls. Hierarchical regression also found that domestic political knowledge, cable TV exposure, Internet news exposure, and radio exposure were the most important predictors of international knowledge. Another regression found that news attention, e-mail use, social media use, and texting about the Haitian earthquake were the three strongest predictors of international involvement. These findings support related research that has found a positive association among Internet news use, international knowledge, and international engagement while also making new contributions regarding the importance of mediated interpersonal discussion for predicting international involvement.
Media Multitasking and Narrative Engagement: Multitasking as a Moderator of Transportation • Rachel Ross; Michael McCluskey, Ohio State University • This study investigates the role of multitasking as a moderator of narrative engagement. A sample of 201 undergraduates was exposed to either a film-only condition or a film coupled with a task to be completed on a computer, and responded to items measuring empathy, transportation, perceived realism and enjoyment. Media multitasking was found to moderate transportation, negatively impacting absorption. Evidence also showed that transportation led to perceived realism and enjoyment. Implications and potential avenues for future research are discussed.
Wikipedia vs. Encyclopedia Britannica: A Longitudinal Analysis to Identify the Impact of Social Media on the Standards of Knowledge • Marcus Messner, Virginia Commonwealth University; Marcia DiStaso, Pennsylvania State University • The collaboratively edited online encyclopedia Wikipedia is among the most popular Web sites in the world. Subsequently, it poses a great challenge to traditional encyclopedias, which for centuries have set the standards of society’s knowledge. It is, therefore, important to study the impact of social media on the standards of our knowledge. This longitudinal panel study analyzed the framing of content in entries of Fortune 500 companies in Wikipedia and Encyclopedia Britannica between 2006 and 2010. Content analyses of the length, tonality and topics of 3,985 sentences showed that Wikipedia entries are significantly longer, more positively and negatively framed, and focus more on corporate social responsibilities and legal and ethical issues than in Britannica, which is predominantly neutral. The findings stress that the knowledge-generation processes in society appear to be shifting because of social media. These changes significantly impact which information becomes available to society and how it is framed.
Conceptualizing Beauty and Culture: A Quantitative Analysis of U.S. and French Women’s Fashion Magazine Advertisements • Pamela Morris, Loyola University Chicago; Katharine Nichols • This study investigates differences in the concept of beauty between France and the United States based on magazine advertisements found in each country. As beauty is implicated in culture, culture is also explored. Beauty is not only a mammoth idea; but looking beautiful is a major industry. The difficulty with researching beauty is that it is elusive and varies with society. Over 570 ads from ten women’s fashion magazines are reviewed. Among the major findings is that American publications consist of more ads as a percentage of total pages. American magazines also include more ad copy. French advertisements employ more English words as opposed to the number of French words found in American publications. In addition, ads for hair care products and makeup are more prevalent in the U.S. than in France. In contrast, French magazines include more ads for lotions and perfumes. Differences illustrate cultural priorities. In terms of tone, people in American publications show more smiles, while people in France are more bizarre and sexy. American advertisements present more women, non-working women, and women as decoration than their French counterparts. This may indicate that the United States is more traditional. French publications show more men with family, which may imply more contemporary gender roles. People in French publications also demonstrate more endorsements. Even though Americans and French have many similarities, subtle differences in advertising reveal cultural variations in beauty between the two nations. This paper provides a framework for further study on advertising, culture, and beauty.
Paging Dora: Examining the impact of recognition of children’s television characters through the capacity model • Cynthia Nichols, Oklahoma State University • The purpose of this study was to examine how liking and recognition influence the processing of educational and narrative content through the constructs of the capacity model. The quasi-experimental portion of this study used 3- to 5-year-old children (N = 135) in a 3 (pace) x 2 (distance) factorial, within-subject design to measure the acquisition of educational content and narrative content. Pace, distance, and children’s cognitive maturity played a significant role in the acquisition of information, as well as liking and recognition. However, the sensitivity of these variables varied. Additionally, the results revealed that the degree of semantic distance and children’s cognitive maturity played a significant role in their ability to acquire information from educational and narrative content.
The Influence of Knowledge Gap on Personal and Attributed HIV/AIDS Stigma in Korea • Byoungkwan Lee; Hyun Jung Oh; Seyeon Keum; Younjae Lee, Hanyang University • This study tests a comprehensive model that explicates the influence of AIDS knowledge gap on personal and attributed stigma. Fear of contagion serves as a mediator between AIDS knowledge gap and AIDS stigma. An analysis of the survey data collected to evaluate the impact of 2008 AIDS campaign in Korea reveals that AIDS knowledge was significantly associated with personal stigma both directly and indirectly but only indirectly associated with attributed stigma through fear of contagion.
Cultural Influence in Differential Normative Mechanisms: A Cross-National Study of Antismoking PSA Effectiveness • Hye-Jin Paek, Michigan State University; Hyegyu Lee; Thomas Hove, Michigan State University • This study explores the detailed mechanisms of norm message effectiveness and cross-national differences in normative mechanisms. Online experiment data from 464 U.S. and Korean participants reveal three findings: (1) collectivism played a significant role in audience receptivity to norm messages, but the role varied by norm type and by country; (2) descriptive and injunctive norm perceptions affected behavioral intention through different mechanisms; (3) the normative mechanism was more rigorous and consistent among Koreans than Americans.
Does Prior Message Work to Promote Motivation for Serious Game Playing? • Eun Hae Park; An Soontae • This study aims to test effects of external aid that can enhance motivation and performance of serious game playing to maximize learning effects. Based on self-determination theory, two types of rationales were examined. Also, individual’s level of issue involvement was tested as a moderating variable. Overall, providing intrinsic goal was effective to increase both motivation and performance but there was no main effects and interaction effect in terms of issue involvement.
Reality TV Subgenres and Cultural Orientations: Individualistic vs. Collectivistic Values among a Multiethnic Sample of Viewers • David Park; Maria Elana Villar • This study tested uniformity of cultural orientations and reality TV subgenre preferences through gender and across a variety of ethnic groups. The results established correlations between collectivism and two reality TV subgenres, crime/police and informational reality programming, among an ethnically diverse group of participants. There were no significant correlations between individualism and any of the reality TV subgenres. Gender and ethnic differences existed in frequency of reality TV subgenre viewing, but not in orientations.
The rumors of our death have been greatly exaggerated: What the data say about the future of television • Jack Powers, Ithaca College • There has been a great deal of controversy and speculation about the impact of the Internet and related digital media on traditional media, particularly television. Some have predicted—and sometimes purport to have discovered—a sharp decline in use of traditional media in general and television viewing in particular. Obviously, confirmation of the future awaits the passage of time. However, data of excellent quality and undeniable pertinence exist that identify the likely future pattern. Three representative national surveys of 8-18 year olds– each about five years apart– report on comprehensive media use in the United States. At the time of the first (1999), Internet use was well underway. By the time of the second (2004), Internet use had reached a high state of development, and by the time of the third (2009), wireless broadband was widely available for use in handheld devices, tablet computers, and portable laptops. Between 1999 and 2009, time spent on the Internet more than tripled (3.6x) and new uses, not significant at the time of the first survey, appeared by the second and third surveys. However, traditional media—screen, audio, print—did not see the drastic decreases many had expected. Instead, total time devoted to television content increased considerably, but real differences in how that content is being accessed have emerged.
Breaking the News: Advertising Embedded in Local Television Broadcasts & Journalist Alienation • Andrea Prewitt, Portland State University • Advertisements have become an increasingly dominant part of daily life and television news is no exception. Market-driven journalism has impacted the way outlets choose stories as well as how they get covered. However, there is still work to be done on the overlooked issue of advertising embedded in news content and the effect it has on both viewer and newsroom values. This study aims to reveal how one station features promotional pieces about businesses and organizations that also pay to have commercials run on that channel. These stories are not clearly labeled as advertisements or sponsored spots and instead blend in with pieces on other topics and events. The practice is an abuse of the public airwaves and forces journalists to struggle with their own professional identity. However, these effects are part of a larger movement that will also be addressed: the implication of market-driven journalism. This study includes a textual analysis of stories the station aired during one program over four months in 2008 to understand the scope of embedded advertising. Additionally, the paper analyzes qualitative interviews with station employees through Karl Marx’s concept of alienation. Journalists come to realize that their work is slowly severed from its definition as a personal contribution to society and any sense of self that is tied to professional identity fails to coincide with roles assumed on the job.
Seeing what you get: A comparison of newspapers’ visual brand personalities and consumer perceptions • Adriane Jewett, University of Kansas; Scott Reinardy, University of Kansas • A visual brand analysis identifies distinctive characteristics and current branding trends in the eight largest newspapers in the U.S., including USA Today, the Los Angeles Times, the New York Daily News, the New York Post, the Chicago Tribune, The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times and The Washington Post. Additionally, A survey of college students (n = 608) utilizes J. Aaker’s (1997) Brand Personality Scale to examine the visual brand personality of top-circulating U.S. newspapers. The theory of semiotics classifies newspaper brands as symbols, allowing the researcher to study their signified meanings and associations. Unaided versus aided personality rankings indicate that students with no visual brand aids rank newspapers as more personality filled than those face-to-face with the visual brand. An analysis of current branding strategies concludes that most of the sample newspapers (7) portray an exciting or competent brand personality and suggests that newspapers are failing to realize the full potential of their visual brands.
Perceived Threat, Immigration Policy Support, and Media Coverage: Hostile Media and Presumed Effects in North Carolina • Brendan Watson, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, School of Journalism & Mass Communication; Daniel Riffe, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill • This study, using survey data (N=529), examined perceived “”threat,”" subjective knowledge about immigration, support for punitive and assimilative policies, and opinions about media coverage effects. Perceived threat was related to support for punitive policies, and “”hostile media perception”" was confirmed. However, perceived threat was not related to presumed influence of coverage. Internet use, age, race, and education predicted threat perception; perceived threat, perceived favorableness of coverage, and daily newspaper reading predicted presumed influence of coverage.
Stereotypical Beauty Norms in Advertisements in Fashion Magazines • Sara Roedl, Southern Illinois University • This study examined models in advertisements in fashion magazines to determine whether portrayals conforming to the stereotypical beauty ideal decreased during a 5 year period. Fifteen codes were used to examine women in ads in Cosmopolitan and Glamour. While some characteristics were shown with equal frequency, significant changes occurred in ethnicity, skin tone, hair length, and age, indicating an increase in the portrayal of multi-ethnic women and women over the age of 30.
What Makes Young Adults Care to Read Online Health Messages? Efficacy and Exemplar Impacts on Message Perceptions and Selective Exposure • Silvia Knobloch-Westerwick; Melanie Sarge, The Ohio State University • Avoidance of health information presents a paramount challenge to health communication campaigns. Drawing on social-cognitive theory and exemplification theory, two studies examined how efficacy and exemplification as message characteristics influence young adults’ selective exposure and perceptions of health messages. Participants (n = 258) browsed an online magazine, with news leads varying by efficacy and exemplification, while selective exposure was unobtrusively logged. Participants generally preferred exemplar information. Men favored ‘low efficacy, exemplar’ messages; women avoided ‘high efficacy, base-rate’ messages. A second experiment (n = 111) examined how efficacy and exemplification affected message perceptions and found neither influenced relevance perceptions but both affected perceived message intent. Results suggest a trade-off of using persuasive elements in health campaigns, as they may reduce exposure.
The Ku Klux Klan’s right-wing appeal: An examination of today’s more mainstream KKK • Andrew Selepak, The University of Florida; john SUTHERLAND, uf dept of adv • The purpose of this study was to explore the relationships among political orientation and fundamental Christian beliefs and agreement with Ku Klux Klan ideology. Results suggest political orientation and Christian fundamental beliefs are significantly related, but not as strong as expected, to agreement with Klan values. These findings support the notion the Klan is taking steps to rebrand its image into a more mainstream organization with an ideology similar to white, religious and political conservatives.
Examining Persuasion Appeals and Substance Featured in Antismoking and Antidrug Advertisements in Social Marketing Campaigns • Drew Shade, Penn State University; Robert Magee, Virginia Tech; Erin Cooper, The Johns Hopkins Institutions; Sarah Long, O’Keeffe & Company • Due to continuing debate regarding the best ways to use mass media to discourage youth marijuana and tobacco use, social marketing campaigns must examine which persuasion appeals will be most effective in changing young adults’ attitudes and behavior. Although the effects of fear appeals have been well documented, much less is known about the impact of humor and shock appeals. The effectiveness of these appeals was tested in a factorial experiment (N = 209) with persuasion appeal (fear vs. shock vs. humor) and substance featured (tobacco vs. marijuana) as factors. Findings revealed that the appeals had differing effects and that the success of any given appeal also depended on the substance with which the appeal was used.
The Use of Blogging as Online Grassroots Activism: Analysis of Blogs in the Scott Sisters Case • Thomas Broadus, University of Southern Mississippi; Melody Fisher, University of Southern Mississippi; Riva Teague, University of Southern Mississippi; Jae-Hwa Shin, University of Southern Mississippi • This study uses content analysis to examine the presence, involvement and mobilization of blogs in the case of Gladys and Jamie Scott, two sisters from Mississippi who received double life sentences for an armed robbery they say they did not commit. This study is significant because it examines how activists used blogs to publicize the Scott sisters‟ case to push for their early release from prison, which the governor granted after nearly 17 years. Blog posts and comments are analyzed and compared in terms of theme, frame, emotion, language and message. Results show that about half the blogs were administered by African Americans. Blog posts primarily provided case background and were predominantly oriented in the direction of personal and political content. The dominant theme was fact-based for blog posts and value-based for comments. The blog posts and comments both employed an episodic dominant frame, diagnostic language and neutral emotions. The findings support similar research that shows most bloggers tend to provide information rather than push their readers to take action.
Teaching Millennials to Engage THE Environment instead of THEIR Environment: A Pedagogical Analysis • Rick Stevens, University of Colorado Boulder; Deserai Crow, University of Colorado Boulder • This paper examines the difficulty in teaching contemporary students of journalism (those in the much-discussed Millennial Generation) to cover complex topics like science and environmental reporting. After examining contemporary literature, the authors subjected 120 undergraduate students to a strategy that combined visual representations of abstract concepts, media texts and experiential peer interactions with positive outcomes on comprehension and demonstrations of critical analysis.
Evolutionary Psychology, Social Emotions and Social Networking Sites — An Integrative Model • Sandra Suran; Gary Pettey; Cheryl Bracken; Robert Whitbred • This exploratory research employed an Evolutionary Psychology (EP) perspective whereby the human mind is viewed through the lens of the physiological and psychological mechanisms that created the developmental programs we use today (Cosmides & Tooby, 1992). This theoretical framework was used to study the relationship between human behavior, the state of alienation, and Social Networking Sites (SNS). Based on survey data from college students, there seemed to be a relationship between alienation and SNS. Alienation dimensions were highest among those who had the lowest amount of contacts on SNS. The findings from this study will add to the body of knowledge on Computer Mediated Communication (CMC) as well as afford an opportunity for further research in understanding human behavior engaged in SNS through the viewpoint of Evolutionary Psychology.
The Concept Of Online Image Of A Brand And Its Application To Nation Brands • Giorgi Topouria, University of Missouri-Columbia School of Journalism • Unlike traditional media, Internet, which is a dynamic global information system, is no longer just communication channel, but environment into which human communication and interactions are moving, and where these interactions leave tangible trace, forever changing the environment itself and parties involved. Under these circumstances, the concept of brand acquires new momentum and special importance, especially for nations. With globalization and IT revolution, countries have become increasingly aware of their image internally and internationally. The concept of brand has strong connection to reputation and image of a country which is becoming increasingly important in world where everything is interconnected. Many countries adopted approach that looks at nations as brands and started managing their country’s image based on branding methods and practices developed within advertising, marketing and PR fields. This approach has become known as nation branding. Based on Chaffee’s blueprint, the paper provides detailed explication of concept of online brand image conceptualized as dynamic sum of all available online information related to brand. Explication includes: justification, empirical description, primitive terms, underlying assumptions, variables, unit definition, operationalization and measurement. Further, the concept is applied to nation-brands, integrated into framework of conceptual model of nation image formation and is used as foundation for expansion of conceptual model of key perspectives in nation image. Paper suggests an expanded model of image of nation-brand and defines directions of future study of how online brand image of nation affects countries’/nations’ reputation and global competitiveness.
Twitter As Public Salience: An Agenda-Setting Analysis • Christopher Vargo, Fall 2011: The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill • Twitter provides an opportunity as a source of public opinion. Therefore, this paper argued Twitter as an indirect measurement of public salience. The issues of BP Oil and The Mortgage and Housing Crisis were given a time series analysis. First and second-level agenda setting variables were coded for television newscasts and newspapers and interpreted as measurements of media salience. Tweets were labeled public salience. A mild relationship between media salience and public salience was shown.
Are you for real? Communication Professionals, Virtual Identity Deception, and Consumer Backlash • Anastasia Pronin; Carson Wagner, Ohio University • Promoters have recognized electronic word-of-mouth can boost message effectiveness. Using anonymous identities, they’ve acted as “”everyday people”" to gain credibility but risk exposure, begging the question whether it causes more harm than good. A two- condition experiment (N= 59) examines source deception exposure effects on credibility and attitudes. In one condition, participants read eWOM by a professional who self- disclosed. In another, participants read the same message — by a product “”enthusiast.” Results show deception exposure backlash effects.
Re-Enlightenment: How Contemporary Dissenters in Pop Culture are Cultivating a New Age of Reason • Sheliea Walker • This essay seeks to explore the similarities between 18th century literature during The Enlightenment and 21st century discourse in the media. I propose that our society is entering a new age of enlightenment based on contemporary expression of dissent in popular culture. Just as in the age of The Enlightenment, dissenting opinions push our society toward increased progress, equality, and tolerance.
Are We Signing In or Logging Off?: The Effect of Information and Entertainment-seeking Internet use on Civic Engagement and the Role of Psychological Well Being and Political Talk • JungHwan Yang, University of Wisconsin-Madison; Nathan Hebert, University of Wisconsin-Madison; Chia-chen Yang, University of Wisconsin-Madison; MinWoo Kwon, University of Wisconsin at Madison; Stephanie Hartwig, University of Wisconsin-Madison • This article examines how two distinctive patterns of Internet use are associated with civic engagement, how four age cohorts might moderate these relationships, and how psychological well-being and political talk might mediate them. The data, drawn from the 2006 DDB Life Style Survey, indicate a positive effect for information-seeking use of the Internet on civic engagement, and a negative effect for entertainment-seeking use. For both types of use, the effects of the Internet on engagement were largest for the youngest cohort and grew weaker, sometimes to insignificance, as age increased. A mediating role for political talk was not found. A mediating role for psychological well-being was found, but only for the youngest age cohort, “”Net Generation”". For Net Generation, both types of Internet use were negatively associated with well-being, and lower well-being scores were associated with higher civic engagement. Though no mediation effect of well-being was found for the two oldest age cohorts, for them higher well-being was associated with higher civic engagement. Our findings suggest that Internet effects on civic engagement are changing and may be growing more influential on the young. The results underscore the need to continually track these relationships in rapidly changing democratic information societies.
Exploring Political Polarization: Polarized Attitudes or Polarized Perceptions? • JungHwan Yang, University of Wisconsin-Madison; Hernando Rojas, University of Wisconsin – Madison • This study first examined multiple dimensions of political polarization by differentiating between the affective and cognitive components of attitude polarization and by introducing new concept of issue perception polarization. Then we identified factors that predict each aspect of polarization. In doing this, we constructed several measures that capture polarization at the group and individual level. Based on national survey data that conducted in Colombia in 2010, we found that the affective and cognitive attitude polarization and issue perception polarization showed different patterns: issue perception and cognitive attitude are highly polarized, whereas affective attitude polarization is not that severe. Also the predictors of each dimension of the polarization were different: the impact of media use was found only for affective attitude polarization; the extreme political ideology affects affective attitude polarization; and the extreme issue perception affects cognitive attitude polarization and issue perception polarization. The findings suggest that political polarization is consisted of multiple distinctive dimensions, which are differently influenced by diverse predictors. Further implications in polarization research were discussed.
Conflict Thesis or the Reverse?: Testing the Relationships among Religiosity, Attitude toward Science and Technology, Media Use, and Subjective Health Status among 56 Societies • Qingjiang (Q. J.) Yao, Fort Hays State University • Does religiosity harms supports to science and technology advancements? Does news media use mediate the relationship? With data drawn from the recent wave of world value survey that covers 56 societies, this study finds that religiosity neither increases nor decreases supports toward science and technology but enhances self-rated health status. Religiosity reduces news media use, but consuming news media does not improve health status and it lowers supports toward science and technology advancements.
The Conflict over Jim Crow Censorship of Movie Scenes in Greensboro, North Carolina, 1937-38 • Lorraine Ahearn, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill • In the Jim Crow South on December 7, 1937, an association of white North and South Carolina movie theater exhibitors met for a silver jubilee convention in Pinehurst, N.C. and made an announcement: They resolved that they would henceforth censor Hollywood movie scenes that violated racial taboos because they showed black performers on an equal footing with whites. The resolution, reported as front-page news in the white-owned Greensboro Daily News, prompted female students from a historically black private campus, Bennett College, to call for a community boycott of white downtown theaters in Greensboro to protest racial stereotypes in movies. This little-known incident may speak to the emerging power of media in the 1930s, particularly in the social construction of race, and may shed light on the history of student activism in a city that was a civil rights flashpoint.
Press Coverage of Indira Gandhi • Adrienne Atterberry • This paper examines how press coverage of Indira Gandhi changed during the 1977 election, as compared to the 1971 and 1980 election cycles. The 1977 election occurred during the Emergency—a time of increased press censorship. Thus, this paper hopes to explore what effect government censorship has on press coverage of Indira Gandhi during an election. Newspaper articles from the Times of India, New York Times, and the Washington Post were selected for analysis. The evidence indicates that press coverage of Indira Gandhi during the 1977 election focused primarily on topics of importance to her political agenda. Meanwhile, coverage of Gandhi during the 1971 and 1980 elections focused on her competence as the leader of India and her significance in foreign relations.
A ‘Pestilent, Factional Quarrel’: Letters Reveal Lincoln’s Obsession with Censorship • Stephen Banning, Bradley University • Contrary to some beliefs, it appears Lincoln did not soften his approach to press suppression during the latter part of the Civil War. This research contrasts two times United State’s President Abraham Lincoln suppressed the American Civil War opposition press. Original letters from Lincoln and those involved in the suppressions are used to shed light on Lincoln’s involvement in tacitly supporting censorship, particularly in the Border States. The findings suggest Lincoln himself allowed press suppression to continue even when it would influence a local election.
Partisan Journalist: William D. Workman and the Rise of the Republican Party in South Carolina • Sid Bedingfield, University of South Carolina • William D. Workman was South Carolina’s best-known journalist when he decided to run for the U.S. Senate in 1962. A segregationist, Workman said he entered the race reluctantly because he feared liberal forces were destroying the nation. He called newspaper work his “life’s calling,” and as both a news reporter and opinion columnist he had claimed allegiance to the norms of modern professional journalism – detachment, independence, and objectivity. But a review of the Workman personal papers tells a different story. Workman had been engaged in partisan political work behind the scenes since early 1960 to help build a conservative Republican Party in the South. Workman’s papers provide a richly detailed example of how press and politics often remained closely entwined in the post-war years, despite the rise of an ethical code that proudly claimed otherwise.
“If I’ve Lost Cronkite …”: Myth and Memory of Walter Cronkite, Lyndon Johnson, and the Vietnam War • Lisa Burns, Quinnipiac University • On February 27, 1968, CBS television broadcast a half-hour news documentary called Report from Vietnam featuring CBS Evening News anchor Walter Cronkite. He ended the program with a clearly labeled editorial where he declared the war “a stalemate.” After watching the special, President Lyndon Johnson reportedly said, “If I’ve lost Cronkite, I’ve lost Middle America.” The so-called “Cronkite moment” has become part of the collective memory of President Johnson, Walter Cronkite, and the Vietnam War. But in his recent book Getting It Wrong, journalism historian W. Joseph Campbell claims that the “Cronkite moment” is a media-driven myth – a dubious or false story that promotes journalism’s significance. But, if the “Cronkite moment” is just a myth, why does it have such staying power? This essay looks at the “Cronkite moment” from a different angle, that of collective memory. By examining the “Cronkite moment” from a collective memory perspective, a different picture develops that helps to why explain why Cronkite’s Tet editorial has become an important part of the collective memories of Johnson, Cronkite, and the Vietnam War. After reviewing references to the “Cronkite moment” in books by journalists, presidential biographers, and media historians, the analysis focuses on two key types of memory-shaping products: memoirs and museum exhibits related to Johnson and Cronkite. This essay will look at how the “story” is remembered in these various iterations, addressing some of Campbell’s concerns along the way.
From Outsider to Martyr: The Advocate’s Coverage of Harvey Milk from 1977 to 1979 • Robert Byrd, University of South Alabama • Harvey Milk’s short-lived political career in San Francisco is a milestone in the gay movement. Milk made waves among the established gay political hierarchy of San Francisco. One member of that hierarchy happened to own the nation’s most-widely circulated LGBT magazine. This paper explores the evolution of The Advocate’s depiction of Milk from a self-centered political outsider with potential to do serious damage to the gay movement to a martyr whose memory will inspire those that follow to continue to work toward the goals he gave his life to achieve.
Community Journalism in a Secret City: The Oak Ridge Journal, 1943-1948 • Michael Clay Carey, Ohio University • In 1943 the federal government approved publication of the Oak Ridge Journal, a weekly flyer sent to residents at one of three secret towns created to develop the Manhattan Project. This in-depth review of the Journal’s content reveals that early issues focused mainly on government propaganda aimed at workers, but over time the publication grew to look and read more like a traditional community newspaper. Even as it evolved, government censorship was still evident.
“Our TV show”: Legitimacy, Public Relations and J. Edgar Hoover’s “The F.B.I.” on ABC-TV • Matthew Cecil, South Dakota State University • “The F.B.I.,” television series allowed J. Edgar Hoover’s public relations team to reach millions of viewers with stories emphasizing the organization’s legitimacy by focusing on themes demonstrating utility and responsibility. A review of FBI control over the series provides a snapshot of state-of-the-art Bureau public relations and brand management at the end of Hoover’s 48-year tenure.
Made by TV: The American Football League and Broadcast Networks • Thomas Corrigan, Penn State; Melanie Formentin, Penn State • In the 1960s, the American Football League’s (AFL) creation ushered in direct competition for professional football’s incumbent circuit, the National Football League (NFL). Network television’s revenue and promotion proved crucial for the AFL’s stability and ascendancy. This paper examines the AFL’s relationship with network broadcasters. A crucial piece of sports broadcasting legislation, paired with NBC’s role as AFL financier, put upward pressure on player salaries, ultimately hastening the AFL and NFL merger of 1966.
A Pulitzer up North, a Libel Suit down South: Southern Editors’ Civil Rights Writings, 1954-1968 • Aimee Edmondson • This study focuses on libel suits filed against four Pulitzer Prize winners in the South. Just as the New York Times faced the wrath of police commissioner L.B. Sullivan in the most famous of libel cases, here are four southern editors who fought suits against public officials and public figures in the South in the 1950s and 1960s. In any study of reporters’ attempts to cover the civil rights movement and southern efforts to stop them, southern journalists should be included.
“Mexicans, Indians and the Worst Kind of White Men”: Bayard Taylor’s Construction of Mexican Identity • Michael Fuhlhage, Auburn University • This paper analyzes 39 first-person reports New York Tribune correspondent Bayard Taylor wrote in California and Mexico in 1849-50. His letters are packed with observations about Mexican people and relations with the Americans who flooded into the territory. His lectures on ethnicity and race and personal papers are also analyzed. Taylor provided a counterpoint to demonizing portrayals of Mexicans in the press but perpetuated stratification of Californio elites and Mexican farmers and laborers.
They Came to Toil: U.S. News Coverage of Mexicans on the Eve of the Great Depression • Melita M. Garza, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill • In the aftermath of the 1929 stock market crash as many as one million Mexican Americans and Mexicans were deported in what has been characterized as a racial exclusion program second only to the Native American removals along the Trail of Tears during the nineteenth century. This study assesses whether Depression era English and Spanish-language newspaper coverage at the incipient stage of this great Mexican diaspora reflected a U.S. economy divided by culture.
“Woman at the Wheel” Column Challenges Detroit’s Notion of the Female Car Buyer, 1965-1982 • Ellen Gerl, Ohio University; Craig Davis, Ohio University • This paper examines the representation of the woman car driver and themes present in the “Woman at the Wheel” column in Woman’s Day from 1965 to 1982. The automotive advice column was created to attract automobile advertising but never did. Textual analysis, interviews, and archival research show that Detroit automakers’ gendered notion of the female car buyer kept them from advertising in women’s periodicals such as Woman’s Day.
Trouble on the Right, Trouble on the Left: The Early History of the American Newspaper Guild • Philip Glende, North Central College • The early years of the American Newspaper Guild were filled with internal conflict as intense as the struggle with employers. Many reporters and editors resisted embracing a trade union model for their organization. For some, journalism was a profession made up of reporters who thrived on individual talent and hard work. For many who opposed the Guild, no issue appears to have been more alienating than leftist leadership in local and national offices.
Sic Juvat Transcendere Liberi: How Newspapers Built the Case for West Virginia Statehood • Matthew Haught, University of South Carolina • Long before their political separation, the people of West Virginia regarded themselves as unique, sharing few ties with the Virginians east of the Blue Ridge Mountains. Benedict Anderson’s concept of imagined communities helps explain the process by which the people of western Virginia united to create a state apart from the east. This paper examines western Virginia newspaper discussions about separation and statehood between 1860-1863 and employs Anderson’s framework as a guide.
“Race Conference Meets In Atlanta”: Public Relations for the NAACP’s First Conference in the South, 1920 • Denise Hill, UNC-Chapel Hill • Since its founding in 1909, the NAACP employed a number of public relations strategies and tactics to communicate its primary objective, which was: “to uplift the Negro men and women of this country by securing for them the complete enjoyment of their rights as citizens, justice in the courts, and equal opportunities in every economic, social, and political endeavor in the United States” More specifically, the NAACP wanted to “”stamp out the evils of race prejudice practiced against the Negro in America in the form of lynching, disfranchisement, Jim-Crowism, unequal industrial and educational opportunities, and other such disabilities.” In 1920, the NAACP decided to hold its first conference in the south. The NAACP believed its first conference in the South, to be held in Atlanta, would be a watershed moment, and its leaders wanted to ensure that it was effectively employing public relations for the conference to further its cause. This study explores how the NAACP used public relations for its eleventh annual conference, and how those public relations activities fit within previously linear models of public relations history.
Insults for Sale: The 1957 Memphis Newspaper Boycott • Thomas J. Hrach, University of Memphis • In the 1950s as African Americans around the country began using their economic clout to affect change in public policy, black citizens of Memphis effectively used a boycott to alter policies at that city’s largest circulation newspaper. The Citizens Improvement Committee, a group of black citizens organized a successful boycott of The Commercial Appeal in 1957. The citizens were seeking changes in the newspaper’s editorial policies including the use of courtesy titles for black women and more coverage of the black community. The 49-day boycott attracted national attention and gained the black community new respect from the white establishment. The boycott set the state for many other successful boycotts in Memphis. The Commercial Appeal had a history of supporting black citizens as evidenced by its receiving the Pulitzer Prize for Public Service in 1923 for its campaign opposing the Ku Klux Klan. But the newspaper also reflected many of the prejudices of white America as evidenced by its insensitivity to the black citizens of Memphis in the 1950s. The criticisms of the newspaper would continue through the 1960s, and the tensions were heightened in 1968. That was when the newspaper sided with the Memphis mayor in the sanitation strike that brought Martin Luther King to the city. On the 40th anniversary of King’s death, the newspaper examined its role in heightening tensions within the black community that were first brought to light in the 1957 newspaper boycott and then in the 1968 sanitation workers strike.
“The gathering mists of time:” American magazines and revolutionary memory, 1787-1860 • Janice Hume, University of Georgia • This study examines 231 American magazine articles published prior to the Civil War to see how they recalled the American Revolution and how that memory evolved during important nation-building years. Much like other histories published during the era, these articles homogenized the story of America’s origins into a “”cult of consensus,”" featuring heroic narratives told in many different formats. The study adds to our understanding of the relationship between the press and American public memory.
Framing White Hopes: The Press, Social Drama, and the Era of Jack Johnson, 1908-1915 • Phillip Hutchison, University of Kentucky • The social presence of African-American boxing champion Jack Johnson reflects one of the most controversial social and media issues of the early 20th Century. Although many scholars have implicated America’s press in the Johnson controversy, the situation has yet to be examined through the lens of journalism history. To provide some of this missing perspective, this critical-historical analysis illustrates how the white press constructed the entire Johnson situation as an overarching narrative, one that unfolded in real time for nearly seven years. The study employs Victor Turner’s theory of Processual Social Drama to explain how the white press, with little variance, framed the open-ended events involving Jack Johnson in terms of a breach-to-redress narrative trajectory that comprised three palpable dramatic acts. This finding contrasts with most Johnson histories, which portray the Johnson controversy as a two-act narrative. The additional insights not only better inform the relationship between the press and the Johnson situation, it also provides insights into how the press of that era used temporal and affective narrative frames to construct news. This orientation helps better explain how the press shaped the Johnson controversy and how it marginalized divergent views of the situation. Additionally, by better understanding the dramatic structure of press coverage, historians gain both a more complex understanding of attitudes toward Johnson over time and a more nuanced etymology of the now-ubiquitous term “white hope.”
A Path Made of Words: The Journalistic Construction of the Appalachian Trail • James Kates, University of Wisconsin-Whitewater • The Appalachian Trail runs for more than two thousand miles from Maine to Georgia. The trail celebrates nature, but its making was a major achievement in the very human art of recreational politics. Conceived in 1921 and completed in 1937, the trail was, for many, simply a venue for hiking and camping. But journalists in many media — including newspapers, popular magazines, and journals of opinion — also cast multiple meanings on the project. The trail’s purposes would come to encompass regional planning, preservation of rural folkways, and the perpetuation of wilderness areas. This paper examines the work of two influential writers — forester and author Benton MacKaye, and New York newspaperman Raymond Torrey — in defining the trail’s place in American life.
Google Books Ngram Viewer and Text-Mining for Culture: Corpora and Digital Data-Mining’s Place in Journalism History • Robert Krueger, George Mason University • The recently launched Google Books Ngram Viewer has been marketed as a user-friendly and accurate corpus for scholars who want to text-mind publications for cultural trends and patterns. But how can corpora like this be of use to journalism and mass communication historians? This paper includes a case study that tests the thesis of historian Sarah Igo’s The Averaged American in order to illustrate how corpora, text-mining, and digital visualization can benefit the historical field.
New Views of Investigative Reporting in the Twentieth Century • Gerry Lanosga • This paper examines a little-studied period in the history of investigative reporting. An analysis of Pulitzer Prize nominations reveals the exposé as an enduring practice between the Muckrakers and the 1960s, not isolated to a few newspapers or iconoclastic journalists but published in newspapers of every size from nearly every state. This examination provides new context for the development of journalism as a profession and of the complex relationship between journalists and official power.
The Tale of Two Legends and Philanthropy in Rock and Roll • Ji Hoon Lee • This phenomenology coupled with historical overview is the examination of the two key charity projects in rock and roll history—The Concert for Bangladesh (1971) and “We Are the World” (1985)—with an emphasis on George Harrison and Michael Jackson’s humanitarian idealism. The study is also a critical reminisce piece, comparing and contrasting their legacies, influences, and criticism. The study uses the context of the two charity projects as an attempt to analyze how they capitalized on the eras’ social and cultural factors.
Intellectual Heft: A.J. Liebling as an Opponent of Anti-Intellectualism in American Journalism • Kevin Lerner, Rutgers University/Marist College • A.J. Liebling essentially invented the role of the press critic in the 1940s, 50s and 60s, but his impact on the profession of journalism, and on subsequent press critics has barely been studied. This essay assesses Liebling’s 82 Wayward Press columns for The New Yorker through the lens of anti-intellectualism as defined by the historian Richard Hofstadter and sociologist Daniel Rigney, giving Liebling a prime place in the intellectual history of journalism.
Marshall “Major” Taylor and the Summer of 1910: Salt Lake City Newspapers Cover the Bicycle Racer’s Final Season • Kim Mangun, The University of Utah • This qualitative study examines articles, cartoons, and advertisements published in six white newspapers in Salt Lake City to see how Marshall “Major” Taylor and his final season of bicycle racing there were covered. The artifacts were examined using critical discourse analysis and narrative analysis. The study uses the interrelated concepts of myth and hero-crafting to critically analyze coverage of Taylor and his races.
Assessing the Dream: The March on Washington and American Collective Memory • Meagan Manning, University of Minnesota-Twin Cities • Building off the large body of work on collective memory, this research examines the “warehouse” created by the Milwaukee Journal and the Chicago Tribune with respect to the March on Washington of 1963. By presenting a history of the march and assessing media representations of different eras in light of that history, this study aims to isolate potential sites of collective memory formation and trace the ways those memories may have changed over time.
Writer by Trade: Journalistic Identity in the Early Eighteenth Century • William Mari • This paper proposes that journalism’s ethos began developing a century before commonly assumed, with the journalists of eighteenth-century Great Britain. This ethos, and its accompanying proto-professional identity (formed in a process of legitimatization, commercialization, and politicization) was championed by its first practitioners, including James Ralph, an American expatriate and political writer, in his Case of Authors by Profession or Trade -writers were, indeed, among the first professional groups to debate their identity publicly.
What Journalism Textbooks Teach Us About Newsroom Ethos • Raymond McCaffrey, University of Maryland • Journalists avoiding treatment for work-related stress have blamed a newsroom ethos that discourages emotional expression. The ethos that guides organizations is often tied to professional codes, according to institutional theory. This study involved a review of textbooks from 1913-1978 to determine their role in mapping out journalism codes. The analysis revealed that textbooks not only taught principles like impartiality, but also that journalists were to remain emotionally detached, avoid introspection, display courage and take risks.
“A Keg of Dynamite and You’re Sitting On It”: An Analysis of the Ad Council’s Atomic Energy Campaign • Wendy Melillo, American University • Following the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, American scientists ran a public service advertising campaign from 1946 to 1947 through the Ad Council to establish an international authority to control atomic weapons. This historical analysis of why the Ad Council’s atomic energy campaign failed provides important insights about how scientists should conduct communication campaigns when dealing with more contemporary issues like climate change and intelligent design.
Kicking off the hype: Newspaper Coverage of Super Bowl I • Brian Moritz • On Jan. 15, 1967, the Green Bay Packers defeated the Kansas City Chiefs, 35-10, in the first AFL-NFL World Championship game – also known as the first Super Bowl. Super Bowl I was the first meeting between teams from the National Football League and the American Football League, and the popular mythology is that the game was not a big story at the time. This paper studies how newspapers at the time covered the game examines the coverage in eight newspapers from across the country. The study shows that the game received wide-ranging and prominent coverage in newspapers at the time, contrary to the myth. The dominant storyline was the merger between the two leagues and the fact that the teams acted as stand-ins for their respective leagues.
The Precious Ingredient of War: The WPB Used Cooking Fat Advertising Campaign of 1943 • Geah Pressgrove, University of South Carolina • In 1943, the U.S. War Production Board (WPB) initiated an advertising campaign instructing American women to collect their used cooking fat for reuse in the making of gunpowder to “exterminate the slant eyes” and sulfa to “ease the pain of a wounded American.” This study examines the WPB cooking fat recycling propaganda using Benedict Anderson’s concept of “imagined communities.” In Anderson’s conception of nationalism, cultural products expressing patriotic feeling are a means by which a common people—an “imagined community” or nation—create their community and imagine its future. The patriotic appeals in the cooking fat ads encouraged American women to imagine themselves as part of a heroic, just nation defeating evil in the world. Anderson’s metaphor is particularly helpful in understanding the social and political meanings, uses, and effects of war time propaganda, as well as the complex relationships among the U.S. government, industry, media, and citizens in constructing national identity in a time of crisis. In building bridges between propaganda studies and Anderson’s concept of imagined communities, this study not only breaks new scholarly ground but also adopts and revises Anderson’s thesis on nationalism in the context of World War II American propaganda activities.
Partisan Rhetoric and the Rise of the Nullification Party in 1831 South Carolina • Erika Pribanic-Smith, University of Texas at Arlington • Rhetoric in South Carolina’s partisan press had immense ramifications as the state’s voters decided whether to elect politicians who aimed to nullify offensive federal economic policy. The year 1831 encompassed events crucial to determining the state’s political actions. This paper examines six South Carolina newspapers during those twelve months and concludes that Nullification partisans used their presses more effectively than the Unionists over the course of the year, tipping public opinion in their favor.
“The Problem Cuts a Dozen Different Ways”: Marquis W. Childs and Civil Rights, 1950s-60s • Robert Rabe, Marshall University School of Journalism • This paper is an analysis of columnist Mark Childs’ thinking and writing on one of the most significant domestic issues of his day, the postwar civil rights movement. It briefly discusses the emergence of the civil rights issue during the 1940s and 1950s, and focuses more fully on the topic as it became more prominent through the early 1960s and the era of the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965. The study concludes with a focus on the lingering complex politics of civil rights as they became even more volatile in the latter part of the decade. It argues that Childs contributed a great deal of support for African-American civil rights programs and policies, but that in the end many of his most important objectives remained unfulfilled.
Gathering The “Inside Dope”: The Practice of Sports Journalism, 1900-1930 • Amber Roessner, University of Tennessee • Heeding Hanno Hardt and Bonnie Brennen’s call for studies that provide insight into the historical role of newsworkers, this study explores the practice of herocrafting in early twentieth century sports journalism. Using a historical case study approach, it examines the rapport-building and newsgathering strategies of Grantland Rice, F.C. Lane, and John N. Wheeler. In doing so, it sheds light on the prevalence of ballyhoo and the emergence of detachment in sports journalism.
The Conflict and Balance of History and Drama in 20th Century-Fox’s The Longest Day • Peter Shooner • The film The Longest Day (1962) was largely the product of two men, Cornelius Ryan and Darryl Zanuck. Ryan, who researched and wrote the book that the movie was based on also wrote the screenplay for the film. Zanuck acted as producer/director on the project and saw the film as a chance to resurrect his failing career. The two men had very different ideas of how accurately the film should represent history, and as a result, they feuded during the entire movie-making process, with Zanuck usually winning. The Longest Day blends history and drama in its retelling of D-Day, at times misrepresenting and disregarding historical fact. This paper analyses Ryan’s and Zanuck’s relationship, how it affected the final product and in what ways the film strays from fact for the sake of drama.
The National Association of Manufacturers’ Short Film “Your Town”: Parable, Propaganda, and Big Individualism • Burton St. John, Old Dominion University; Robert Arnett, Old Dominion University • In the aftermath of the Great Depression, the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) faced growing anti-business sentiment. As part of a widespread propaganda campaign to assuage public concerns about industry, in 1940 NAM created and distributed the short film Your Town. The movie, pursuing an integration propaganda strategy, appealed to Americans’ individualistic values by portraying industry as a beneficent fellow traveler who was a Big Individual — a heroic, larger-than-life figure that brought blessings to all. Applying critical insights (Altman, Campbell, Gunning, Propp) concerning the parabolic narrative form, this work finds that, while NAM’s original concept of Big Individualism has faded, modern American commercial films inadvertently carry forward one conceptual aim of NAM’s Your Town: encourage individuals to continue to think of independent action – and not systemic reform – as a foundational worldview for life’s challenges.
Embed vs.Unilateral, 1904: Risks and Rewards in Coverage of the Russo-Japanese War • Michael Sweeney, Ohio University • This study examines the strengths and weaknesses of war reporting from the perspectives of embedded, accredited correspondents and “unilaterals,” who report without military assistance or protection. It uses a variety of primary sources to examine and analyze the work of three reporters from the Russo-Japanese War: Lionel James of The Times of London and New York Times, Stanley Washburn of the Chicago Daily News and Minneapolis Times, and Hector Fuller of the Indianapolis News. All three used boats on the Yellow Sea to gather news, including James, the first to report from a war zone via radio. James chose to report with the approval of the Japanese navy, in return for accepting a Japanese spy and censor aboard his boat. Washburn and Fuller reported independently, with the former gathering news from a dispatch boat and then filing reports from land-based telegraph lines, and the latter sailing into and out of the besieged garrison of Port Arthur to gather the only outsider’s view of conditions in the sealed city. The paper determines that each reporter obtained stories that the others could not, and concludes that both embeds and unilaterals have advantages that recommend the use of both in wartime.
From Clanking Chains to Clashing Arms: A Black Newspaper and its Coverage of the Black Soldier in the Civil War • Thomas Terry, Idaho State University • This paper examines the coverage of the black soldier through the pages of a black newspaper, the Pacific Appeal, published in San Francisco, California during two years of the Civil War. Editor Philip Bell admonished the union for neglecting to make emancipation the principal war aim and embracing black recruits.
Reflections of culture in Nigerian video films • Emmanuel Alozie, Governors State University • For more than 25 years, Nigeria has emerged as one of the world’s leading video film producers. Since its inception, the cultural messages and values contained in these films have been a subject of interest. Several studies have been conducted to examine the contents. This study relies on a collection of these studies to extract the most common themes that have emerged. It uses the information and communication technologies as its conceptual framework.
An American in Paris, Rio & Morocco: A Transnational Analysis of The Price of Beauty • Emilia Bak, UGA • The Price of Beauty follows Jessica Simpson and two friends as they travel the world and talk to women about ideas of beauty. The show appears to be a benign exploration of women’s ideas about beauty, but complicated issues about diversity, the dominance of the West, and the genre of the travel show itself arise. Using a transnational feminist lens, this paper explores how diversity, in ideas about beauty, constructed the cultures explored as “”other.”"
The Political Economy of Hip-Hop Culture in USA Today • Sean Baker, Central Michigan University; Johnny Mann, Towson University • A content analysis was conducted on hip hop articles in the USA Today to observe ways hip-hop culture has been portrayed. Several factors were analyzed including the amount of articles, story location, story type, and story length. The context in which hip-hop culture was presented was measured by the number of references to violence, race, crime, affiliations, success and observing the changes over time. Articles in the early years were more likely to discuss hip hop in short news briefs as violent and criminal. As references to sales and success increased, hip hop received positive and more prominent feature coverage.
When Ritual Media Events Fail to Unite: A Case Study on Holodomor Commemoration in Ukraine • Olga Baysha, University of Colorado at Boulder • During recent years, the problematic of social disenchantment, cynicism, and divide as manifestations of media effects has become one of the central areas of inquiry in social research. It has been acknowledges that, instead of enhancing social solidarity, late modern media events sharpen the forces of social disruption. This paper presents the case study of the commemoration of Ukrainian Holodomor (Great Famine) – a media event that has widened the split within the Ukrainian society.
Drawing Lines in the Journalistic Sand: Jon Stewart, Edward R. Murrow and Memory of News Gone Bye • Dan Berkowitz; Robert Gutsche Jr, The University of Iowa • In mid-December 2010, Daily Show host Jon Stewart asked Congress to address the healthcare needs of 9/11 rescue workers – which it did. Shortly after, The New York Times published an analysis piece comparing Stewart to the legendary broadcaster Edward R. Murrow. This paper explores how collective memory of Murrow was used by both mainstream media and the blogosphere to negotiate membership boundaries of journalism itself, with analysis conducted through textual analysis of online news texts.
“”To See Life as a Poem”": Toward a Mythology of Music • Phil Chidester, Illinois State University • Taking aim at the scholarly consensus that verbal language is the sole symbol system capable of conveying the complexities and nuances of myth, this paper seeks to establish music’s own ability to invoke a sense of mythic transcendence. Turning to Bob Dylan’s Biograph (1985) as a case study, I argue that Dylan’s performance as a mythic storyteller invites listeners to perceive and reconsider their relationships to society and their connections to the cosmos.
Haunted asylums? Stigma and mental illness in paranormal reality TV • Michelle Dangiuro-Baker, Penn State University • Stigma is a phenomenon that teaches individuals to discredit those who pose a threat to society. Persons with mental illness have long been stigmatized as abnormal, dangerous, and criminal. Paranormal reality TV, which features former mental institutions, provides the seedbed for such stigma communication. Through textual analysis, episodes of Ghost Hunters and Ghost Adventures featuring mental institutions were analyzed within Smith’s (2007) framework for stigma communication. Results suggest that both series perpetuate mental illness stigma.
The effects of normalizing forces on the development of an online radicalized public sphere • Rachel Davis, West Virginia University; Bob Britten • This study examines to what degree homosexual blogs are effective in forming online counter-publics as a form of ‘other’ discussion against mainstream and oppositional discourses. This work draws from Dahlberg’s conceptualization of a radicalized public sphere as well as other theories relating to public sphere and homosexual communication. The findings in this study illustrate the ability of blogs to facilitate radicalized public sphere formations through online discourse by enabling users to form discourses of contestation.
Power Evasive Diversity: How Journalism’s Focus on the Personal and Individual Leaves Racial Power Imbalances Intact • Kevin Dolan • This paper explores how white and journalistic identifications and journalistic conventions and practices perpetuate the racial status quo. If find mainstream U.S. journalism consistently serves white racial interests and the racial status quo despite its push for diversity and stated aims to improve coverage of nonwhite communities. This is based on an in-depth ethnographic study of two daily newspapers and extensive one-on-one interviews with more than 60 journalists.
Silence and Agony: A Comparison of Chronic Pain Depictions in Blogs and Newspapers • Robin Donovan • This critical discourse analysis compared blog and newspaper coverage of chronic pain. Framing, definition/self-definition of people with chronic pain, and otherization were examined in a study of 1,223 articles. Bloggers described pain specifically, focusing on its social impact and self-redefinition. In contrast, newspaper coverage highlighted debilitation, victimization, and addiction. Newspapers medicalized and otherized ill people by portraying chronic pain as less impactful, less agonizing, and less real than bloggers’ descriptions.
“”Below The Yellow Line”": Competitor Discourse on NBC’s “”The Biggest Loser”" • Eric Dunning; Mary Katherine Alsip, University of Alabama; Kim Bissell, University of Alabama • This paper is unique in the sense that it will be an investigation into what has so far been ignored in both body image and reality TV scholarship: participant’s ideas about body image/weight loss in the media constructed, competitive “”reality”" of TV. In doing so, this paper utilizes the most robust method of evaluation, especially when looking at contestant attitudes, conceptualizations and responses to body image/weight issues, is a critical discourse analysis of their rhetoric.
Framing in the ‘New Media Environment’: Fox News Channel (FNC) Covers the Bristol Palin Pregnancy • Frank Durham • On 1 September 2008, the opening day of the Republican National Convention, Bristol Palin’s teen pregnancy was publicly announced. Fox News Channel (FNC) framed Bristol Palin’s pregnancy as a positive story, foreclosing critical debate on the issue of teen pregnancy. Based on Couldry’s critique of the use of media rituals to construct and consolidate ‘centered’ media power, this critical textual analysis examines framing as a media ritual operaating to make the media’s symbolic power legitimate.
Thinking about Journalism with Superman • Matthew Ehrlich, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign • Superman is an icon of American popular culture. However, although Superman’s alter ego Clark Kent is a reporter who works for a daily newspaper, few have analyzed in any depth the role that journalism plays in the Superman mythology. This paper uses Superman in its various incarnations in comics, radio, movies, and television as a way of thinking critically about real-world journalism’s complex and contradictory relationship to truth, justice, and the American way.
Questioning the Kibera Discourse: Articulating Representations and Lived Experience in a Nairobi Slum • Brian Ekdale, University of Wisconsin – Madison • I argue the discourse surrounding the Nairobi slum Kibera exaggerates the community’s deplorable conditions and ignores features residents value. As a result, a disconnect exists between this discourse and the lived experiences of Kibera residents. I examine this disconnect by asking Kibera residents to articulate their life experiences and what they understand to be the Kibera discourse. In interviews, residents demonstrate an awareness of and dissatisfaction with the dominant discourse about their community.
Theorizing Cultural Development vis-à-vis Cultural Imperialism Theory: Lessons from Nigeria • Nnamdi Ekeanyanwu, Department of Mass Communication, Covenant University, Ota, Nigeria • Cultural Imperialism Theory is one of the loose theories that discuss media, society and cultural relations between nations. Scholars of media/cultural orientation have questioned the fundamental pillars of this theory while a few others have continued to support it. This paper re-evaluates the possible positions and concludes that the very foundation upon which this theory is built is no longer solid considering 21st century questions that the proponents have failed to answer satisfactorily.
The Copyright Wars, the Free Culture Movement, and Second Wave Critical Legal Studies • Victoria Ekstrand, Bowling Green State University; Cynthia Nicole Shipman; Andrew Famiglietti • This paper maintains that the free culture movement in intellectual property (IP) law, inspired by Critical Legal Studies (CLS), has generated a second wave of CLS critique and activism, in somewhat indirect and unintentional fashion. The practical effect is a new kind of dialogue about IP law that is inclusionary, participatory, and capable of effecting change.
The Next Cable Star: Critical industrial practice in HGTV’s reality competition format • Madeleine Esch, Salve Regina University • Unlike other better-known reality talent competition shows, HGTV’s Design Star offers as grand prize the chance for winning contestant to host his/her own series on the network. I argue that such a “”farm league”" format is not only a hyper-efficient commercialization of necessary processes but also a revealing self-reflexive act (what J. T. Caldwell calls “”critical industrial practice”") that affirms the value of on-camera television labor in an increasingly rationalized production environment.
Peace is War: Epistemological and Ethical Concerns in Peace Journalism’s Theory, Praxis, and Practice • Nicholas Gilewicz, Temple University • Peace journalism—journalistic practice attempting to critique and correct war journalism—arises from structuralist analysis, has culturalist aims, and emerges as an ethical media frame. 42 recent articles and books about peace journalism’s theory, praxis, and practice indicate both its failure to fully consider its own discursive structure and epistemological and professional problems paralleling those of war journalism. To support peace journalism’s admirable ethical aims, proponents should attend to refining and strengthening its theoretical bases.
A Watchdog to Reckon With: Delivering WikiLeaks in the Israeli and Australian Press • Robert Handley, University of Denver; Amani Ismail, American University in Cairo • By examining how Israeli and Australian news media treated the WikiLeaks phenomenon in the last few months, this study interrogates how news discourses on this so-called “”whistleblower”" inform us about how journalists handle professional versus national narratives, especially when the newsbreaker (WikiLeaks) is a non-national news entity. Analysis indicates that the WikiLeaks factor may well complicate the traditional “”their news”" and “”our news”" dichotomy, particularly because nation-states’ secrets are revealed on the global landscape.
Spaces for Feminist (Re)articulations: The Blogosphere and the Sexual Attack of Journalist Lara Logan • Dustin Harp, University of Texas School of Journalism; Jaime Loke, University of Oklahoma; Ingrid Bachmann, University of Texas at Austin • This discourse analysis explores traditional and feminist articulations of rape in online mediated discourse of the sexual attack of journalist Lara Logan in Egypt. Examination of 175 stories and links in the top ten news blogs showed that the blogosphere contested traditional rape narratives that blamed Logan for the attack. In doing so, bloggers engaged in a struggle for meaning and mainstreamed feminist understandings on sexual violence within the online public space.
I Tweet, You Tweet: Journalists’ Use of Twitter and the Individualization of Participation • Kristen Heflin, University of Alabama • This study analyzes journalistic use and evaluation of Twitter and the implications for addressing journalism’s present crisis in credibility. It argues that Twitter serves as a conduit for individualized empiricism, which journalists comfortably accommodate as a supplement to traditional reporting, a move that preserves their professional status without critically reflecting on the practices that perpetuate the crisis of credibility. This study also discusses journalism’s crisis of credibility as a crisis of epistemology.
Television’s spectacle of autism: Metaphors of a popular network program • Avery Holton, University of Texas-Austin • This study explored the metaphor of autism as fear, oddity, and disease in the discourse of a popular American television program, arguing that the public was exposed to multiple metaphorical presentations of autism that are not necessarily representative of the culture of autism. While autism as a diagnosis is characterized largely by cognitive and behavioral characteristics, the discourse presented through the program may have inflated such characteristics for the viewing public.
Mediating identities: Taiwanese migrants’ readings of Chinese news • Shuling Huang • Using the case of Taiwanese migrants in China, this paper demonstrates that news reception involves three levels of readings: information evaluations, meaning construction and identity negotiation. These readings are cross-referred to each other and associated with migrants’ lived experiences. Three news events of China in 2008 invite various readings. Mostly, migrants distrust China’s official discourse and struggle over their Chineseness. Through the reception of Chinese news, paradoxically, a kind of Taiwanese consciousness is reinforced.
Selling the Post-Communist Female Body: Portrayals of Women and Gender in Bulgarian Advertising • Elza Ibroscheva, Southern Illinois University Edwardsville • The study examines hypersexualization of the female body in Bulgarian advertising to explore how the trend of what media scholars call “”porno chic”" might normalize and glorify the process of turning the female body into a commodity. This paper examines images of women in the Vodka Flirt campaign to trace the construction of female sexuality and the role of ideology in controlling these images and their expressions in advertising as one form of cultural production.
Girlfriends & Sex and the City: an intersectional analysis of race, gender, & commodity feminism in two TV shows • Camille Kraeplin • In intersectional theory, gender and race have been referred to as super-ordinate groups. People think about themselves in terms of membership in these groups and are likely to be categorized and stereotyped by others based on these affiliations. Discourse analysis was used to examine these group identifications in Sex and the City and Girlfriends. Three discursive themes were found to connect the two shows: the Desperation Theme, the Networks of Care theme, and the Consumption and Class theme.
Double Burdens of Sexuality and Gender on Women: How Queer Texts Marginalize Female Queers • Jungmin Kwon, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign • This paper explores how gender translates into sexuality, or specifically, how lesbians are situated within queerness. To illuminate this blind spot, in which queer discourses contribute to the double-marginalization of lesbians, I examine prominent scholarly queer texts and the acclaimed queer media content, Queer as Folk. Through a critical approach to academic and queer cultural products, this study points out that women are constructed as minorities not only in gender, but in sexuality as well.
An Historical Overview of Philanthropy in Rock:1950s-2000s • Ji Hoon Lee • This study presents a brief historical overview of rock music’s philanthropic efforts in the latter half of the 20th century. A key contention in this study is that rock music has worked to educate and enlighten the public to raise awareness over the course of its history and to present similar possibilities in the new millennium.
Better at Life Stuff: Consumption, Identity, and Class in Apple’s “”Get a Mac”" Campaign • Randall Livingstone, University of Oregon • Apple’s “”Get a Mac”" advertising campaign highlights the differences between the casual, confident, creative Mac user and the formal, frustrated, fun-deprived PC user through a series of comical television spots. Utilizing close reading and ideological criticism, this study considers the campaign as a popular culture text with embedded implications about consumption, identity, and class, revealing thematic dichotomies that obscure these issues while promoting the spectacle of consumption and the myth of self-actualization through commodities.
The Wild West of 1911 (or 2010?): Red Dead Redemption’s Past/Present Conflation• Ryan Lizardi • With video games’ growing cultural legitimacy and the increasing reliance on visual histories as primary sources of collective knowledge, it is important to examine what information and ideologies are learned through experiencing video games’ histories. Analyzing Red Dead Redemption (2010), the default contemporary video game historical representation is shown to conflate the past/present and reduce “”history”" to individualistic, simple interpretations. Red Dead Redemption indexes present concerns and ideologies more than its setting, the Wild West.
Money as Speech: An Ideological Analysis of how Corporate Speech Rights Influence the Political Process • Nneka Logan, Georgia State University • This article explores the implications of corporate speech rights on the democratic political process. It draws upon critical, ideological and rhetorical approaches to analyze the key Supreme Court cases on corporate speech rights – Buckley v. Valeo (1976) and Citizens United (2010). I argue that corporate speech rights create conditions where corporate influence can overtake citizen participation.
A Critical Analysis of Facebook Hate Groups Targeting President Barack Obama • Mia Moody, Baylor University • This exploratory analysis of hate groups on Facebook looks at historical representations of black men, in general, and hate groups targeting President Barack Obama, specifically. Findings indicate most groups fall into one of four categories: race-based, political, humor and love-hate. Such analyses are important because media influence the construction of the racialized condition in which we live, and it is often through media images that people negotiate identities, ideas, and relationships.
Media Construction of Global Natural (or Not-so-natural) Disasters: A Critical Discourse Analysis • Siho Nam, University of North Florida • Through critical discourse analysis, this article uncovers the forces underlying the homogenous, sensational, and formulaic media coverage of global natural disasters. Focusing on the intersection between the political economy of global media institutions and the discursive formation of disaster discourses, the article unearths the recurring logics, themes, and patterns of the media discourses of global natural disasters, and it then analyzes the roles these hegemonic discourses play in reinforcing unequal, exploitative world system.
Remembering the Korean Past: Sandglass, the Kwangju Democratization Movement, and the 386 Generation • Sang Hwa Oh, University of South Carolina • A Korean television drama, Sandglass represented and explored tumultuous political and social events in Korea from the 1960s to 1980s. Using Benedict Anderson’s concept of “”imagined communities,”" this study of the role of the televised drama Sandglass in Korean social life provides valuable insight into how a media text can help a common people construct a usable history out of a hidden, traumatic past. This study also introduces the concept of “”generational imagined community.”"
Media conduction: Festivals, networks, and boundaried spaces • Robert Peaslee, Texas Tech University • This paper is a report on extended qualitative fieldwork regarding the phenomenon of media festivals, including those related to both film and comic book culture. It is also an initial attempt at forming the trends and patterns suggested by this fieldwork into something like a theory of media conduction. Media conduction brings with its semantic play a subtle exploration of power relationships often assumed to be transcended in the more emancipatory notions of consumer power.
Disrespecting the Doxa: The Daily Show Critique of CNN’s Struggle to Balance Detachment and Connectedness • Burton St. John, Old Dominion University • CNN operates with a deep connection to traditional journalistic values and their associated “”rules of the game,”" or doxa. Not surprisingly, CNN attempts to balance established doxa against pressures brought about by changing news-media technologies, consumer patterns and operation business models. This study examines how TDS’s points to major dysfunctions within such a journalistic doxa and what the show’s critiques reveal about the need for a more reflexive journalism.
“”It’s better than blaming a dead young man:”" Creating mythical archetypes in local coverage of the Mississippi River drownings • Erica Salkin, University of Wisconsin-Madison; Robert Gutsche Jr, The University of Iowa • This study provides a glimpse at myth within newswork (Lule, 2001) in smaller communities dealing with unexpected trauma. An analysis of news coverage of the drownings of 10 young men in Wisconsin over 15 years provides evidence that the values and needs of a given community drive both the creation and use of mythical news archetypes. The archetypes’ value appears to reflect the community’s assessment of the magnitude of its own loss.
Katrina’s power: A critical political economic communication analysis of the intersection of government and media institutions • Loren Saxton, University of Georgia; Elli Lester-Roushanzamir • Hurricane Katrina slammed the Gulf Coast on August 29, 2005, and news media flooded the Gulf Coast immediately after to report the disaster. This analysis, through critical political economy, examines how structures of interconnection between news media and government institutions reorganized public discourse immediately after Katrina. Ultimately, this research suggests that economic structures mask the structural variables of race and class and therefore serve the interests of industrial and corporate blocs.
The sovereignty of the Republic of Korea shall reside in the people • Wooyeol Shin, University of Minnesota, Twin Cities; Ji Yun Ryu, Yonsei University • This study explores strategic use of newspaper advertising by the 2008 Korean Candlelight Vigil. In the ads, the protestors’ collective identities functioned as vehicles to link the vigil’s issues to shared values, including the protection of democracy and the Korean way of life. The movement was also symbolically connected with the Constitution of South Korea. The underlying message was that the constitutional rights resided with the vigil, not with the opponents, including the Korean government.
What is free? Cooperation, collaboration, and the essential dilemma of the Fourth Estate • Edgar Simpson, Ohio University • This study examined the most recent federal Shield Law debate, state Shield Laws, and the statutes of all fifty states and the District of Columbia through a prism of press independence. Thirty-nine states provide a variety of exemptions, exclusions, and privileges for comment and news gathering by established media, in contradiction to longheld notions of independence embodied in First Amendment theory and industry ethical codes. Government has tightened its embrace with journalism and this presents the essential dilemma: Does journalism serve its sources or its audience?”
Then and Now, Free Speech v. Free Elections • Shea Smock, Florida State University • This study provides a qualitative content analysis from the political economic perspective of Network and Public Broadcasting Discourse Surrounding McConnell v. Federal Election Commission and Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission . This paper is part of a larger study that serves as my Master’s thesis at Florida State University. The thesis also includes a historical analysis of Supreme Court cases and legislation leading up to Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission.
Heroines under control: Unexpected news portrayals of women in the organ of the Bulgarian Communist Party • Miglena Sternadori, University of South Dakota • This is a rhetorical analysis of the news coverage of women’s issues in Rabotnichesko Delo, the organ of the Bulgarian Communist Party, over three non-consecutive years. The analysis illustrates an ideologically constructed reality, in which women’s limited career fulfillment co-existed with oppressive expectations, such as the importance of having sons over daughters, maintaining physical attractiveness, and shouldering household chores.
The World Cares: What Fantasy Themes Appear on Facebook Status Updates? • Edson Jr. Tandoc, University of Missouri-Columbia; Heather Shoenberger • Studies on self-presentations on social networking sites have focused on biographical data, contact details and multi-media contents and comments that people share. But self-presentation, particularly on Facebook, transcends these pieces of information: Users can tell the online world their thoughts, feelings and opinions through their status updates. Guided by the symbolic convergence theory and the uses and gratifications approach, this study focused on the disclosure of these intimate details through a public and real-time feature.
Is it the Audience? A Comparison of Framing of Turkey’s EU Membership in the International Herald Tribune and in the New York Times • Nur Uysal, University of Oklahoma • This study examined news framing of Turkey’s accession to the European Union in the coverage of the International Herald Tribune and in the New York Times following the 2005 Luxembourg summit. As the first Muslim country seeking membership in the EU, Turkey represented a challenging test. A content analysis of news stories revealed that the IHT framed the issue as a conflict between Muslim Turkey and Christian Europe, a culturally congruent theme for European publics.
The Politics of Authenticity: A Dilemma for Campaign Consultants • James Wittebols, University of Windsor • Promotional culture techniques have permeated political campaigns for some time, bringing the techniques of advertising, marketing and PR into politics. Recently, the promotional culture industry has begun to appropriate the human value of authenticity as a means to promote, sell or persuade. This paper reports the results of interviews with political campaign consultants on the importance of having the public regard a candidate as authentic and how that authenticity is conveyed in an election campaign.
Discourses about Distant Suffering and Benefactors on the Fox-Affiliated Teen Kids News Show • Anne Golden Worsham, BYU • This critical discourse analysis examines stories about distant suffering and benefactor representations on the Fox-affiliated Teen Kids News show. This paper demonstrates how Chouliaraki’s (2006) theory on the mediation of distant suffering can be used when analyzing features about benefactors and distant suffering on a teen-oriented news program. Four discourses are identified concerning benefactor representations: militaristic, corporatized, technological, and development discourse. This paper explores the negative societal implications of these discourses.
Exploring the Motivations of Online Social Network Use in Taiwan • Saleem Alhabash; Hyojung Park, University of Missouri, School of Journalism; Anastasia Kononova, American University of Kuwait; Yihsuan Chiang; Kevin Wise, University of Missouri, School of Journalism • The current study explores the motivations of online social network use among a sample of the general population in Taiwan (N = 4,105). The study investigated how seven different motivations to use Facebook predicted the intensity of Facebook use, specific content generation behaviors on Facebook, and other indicators of Facebook use. Results showed the motivation to use Facebook for updating one’s own status and viewing other peoples’ status updates was the strongest predictor of the intensity to use Facebook, followed by four other motivations as significant predictors. The motivation to view, share, tag and be tagged in photographs was the strongest predictor of content generation behavior on Facebook, followed by five other motivations as significant predictors. Results are discussed in terms of expanding motivations to use Facebook to the study of social networking sites and other new and social media.
Body by Xbox: The Effects of Video Game Character Body Type on Young Women’s Body Satisfaction and Video Game Enjoyment • Vincent Cicchirillo, University of Texas at Austin; Osei Appiah, The Ohio State University; Whitney Walther, The Ohio State University; Christopher Brown, The Ohio State University; Kristen Carter, The Ohio State University • Numerous studies have examined the relationship between women’s body satisfaction and their exposure to thin women in the media. However, few if any studies have examined women’s body satisfaction after exposure to female video game characters. This study looks at the influence of different female body shapes (i.e., thin, average, and overweight) within a video game on outcomes related to identification, enjoyment, and body satisfaction among women video game players. Two-hundred twenty-two young women played a third-person shooter game on Xbox featuring female characters that consisted of one of three different body sizes (skinny, average, or overweight). The findings indicate female participants who played as either a skinny or average sized female character reported greater body dissatisfaction than participants who played as an overweight female character. Additionally, results show participants were more likely to identify with and perceive similarity to skinny and average female characters than they were the overweight female characters. These results support upward comparison of social comparison theory.
Motivational Influences of Linking: Factors guiding behaviors on Facebook • Kanghui Baek, University of Texas at Austin; Avery Holton, University of Texas-Austin; Dustin Harp, University of Texas School of Journalism; Carolyn Yaschur, University of Texas at Austin • More than 600 million people currently use the social network site Facebook, which allows for multiple forms of interaction. Noting the importance of sharing links to news and information − a key function of Facebook – this study determined user motivations for linking, the influence of those motivations on linking frequency, and the content of those links. Building upon uses and gratifications theory, this study found the need for sharing information, convenience and entertainment, to pass time, interpersonal utility, control, and promoting work contributed to the propensity to share links. Information sharing also predicted the frequency of linking. Further, this study found that motivations for linking influenced the types of links posted. Higher educated individuals who desire to share information were more likely to post news links. Those who did not seek to control others posted more entertainment links. Users interested in promoting their work posted job-related content. The findings of this study and their implications are discussed.
Does Negative News Have Positive Effects? The Influence of Blog Posts and Comments on Credibility • Elizabeth Bates, Baylor University • The blog poster, level of company guilt in blog post, and ratio of company-supportive to company-critical blog comments were varied to determine how each affected perceptions of company and source credibility. Data suggests public relations practitioners are less trustworthy than journalists. However, the company and its public relations practitioner are more credible when the dominant opinion in the blog, particularly in the blog comments, suggests the company is not guilty.
Examining the relationships of smartphone ownership to use of both legacy and new media outlets for news • Clyde Bentley, University of Missouri; Kenneth Fleming, University of Missouri-Columbia • The overriding research question of the study is to see if ownership of mobile phone would affect use of both traditional and new media outlets for news. Analyses of a national survey (n = 496) in early 2010 show that ownership of mobile phone was a significant factor in explaining use of mobile phone, online media, and newspaper’s website for news; it had no impact on readership of print daily or weekly newspaper and watching news on television, after age, gender, education, and income were statistically controlled. In addition, age was significantly and positively associated with use of traditional news media, and negatively associated with use of online media and mobile phone for news. On average, smartphone owners were significantly younger than those who had either simple cellphone or no cellphone at all.
The hyperlinked world: A look at how the interactions of news frames and hyperlinks influence news credibility and willingness to seek information • porismita borah, Maryville University • Prior research has already identified the influence of using hyperlinks in online information gathering. The present study attempts to understand first, how hyperlinks can influence individual’s perceptions of news credibility and willingness to seek information. Second, the paper extends previous research by examining the interaction of hyperlinks with the content of the story. And in doing so, the paper examines the influence of hyperlinks on communication concepts such as news frames. The data for the study were collected using an experiment embedded in a web-based survey of participants. Findings show that hyperlinks in news stories can increase perceptions of credibility as well as willingness to seek information. Results also reveal the interaction of news frames in the process, for example participants’ perception of news credibility increases in the value framed condition. Implications of the findings are discussed.
Great Expectations: Predicted iPad adoption by college students • Steven Collins; Tim Brown • While the iPad has been popular, newspaper and magazine publishers have not had the same fortune in drawing people to their applications for the device. A longitudinal study of college students, future news consumers, shows that interest in adopting the iPad has grown over two points in time. However, among potential adopters, interest in paying for digital newspaper and magazine iPad content has not grown. However, data do show that those with smartphones are much more likely to adopt the iPad and other tablets. In addition, the influence of change agents on adoption intent is confirmed and seems to indicate that the iPad has moved beyond the critical mass phase.
Mobile News Adoption among Young Adults: Examining the Roles of Perceptions, News Consumption, and Media Usage • Sylvia Chan-Olmsted; Hyejoon Rim, University of Florida; Amy Zerba • Using the frameworks of innovation diffusion and technology acceptance model, this study examines the predictors of mobile news consumption among young adults. Survey findings showed the perceived relative advantage of mobile news is positively related to its adoption and willingness to pay for mobile news services. Perceived utility and ease of use play significant roles in mobile news adoption. This study validates the importance of examining the adoption process from multiple perspectives.
Deciphering Blog Users: Personalities, Motivations, and Perceived Importance of Blog Features • Szu-Wei Chen, University of Missouri-Columbia; Elizabeth Behm-Morawitz • Different from many past studies that mainly focused on bloggers, this research aimed to explore how general blog users browse, read or comment on others’ blogs. More specifically, we employed the uses and gratifications framework to link blog users’ personality traits (the Big Five inventory), motivations to use blogs (entertainment, information seeking, social interaction, and personal identity) and perceived importance of various blog features (e.g., content and source credibility, hyperlinks, ease to use, interactivity, author anonymity, popularity and reputation). A pilot study was first conducted to clarify whether participants have a consistent understanding of what a blog is. Then, 341 participants were recruited to fill out a self-administered online survey. A two-step structural equation modeling approach was used to test the proposed model. The results not only helped clarify several inconsistent findings in the past, but also provided insightful directions for future research.
Determinants of Intention to Use Smartphones: Testing the Moderating Role of Need for Cognition • Hichang Cho; Byungho Park • By integrating the technology acceptance model (Davis, 1989) with the need for cognition (NFC; Cacioppo & Petty, 1982), we aimed to specify the conditions under which different internal beliefs (e.g., perceived usefulness and perceived ease of use) and social influence factors (e.g., subjective and descriptive norms) are important in determining behavioral intention to use smartphones. The results based on survey data (N =172) provided support for our hypotheses that NFC is an important motivational construct that moderates the linkages between cognitive instrumental beliefs, social influence factors, and behavioral intentions (BI). Specifically, perceived usefulness had a stronger effect on BI for high NFC people, whereas perceived ease of use and subjective norms had stronger effects on BI for low NFC people. The findings reveal possible important variations in technology acceptance and the role of NFC in governing these alternative processes.
Social Networking in Higher Education: A Collaboration Tool for Project-Based Learning • Amy DeVault, Wichita State University; Lisa Parcell, Wichita State University • This case study explores the use of social networking to enhance project-based service-learning. The researchers found that the student group used social networking, specifically Twitter and Facebook, for collaboration among group members to complete this project-based objective, to build a community of practice with local communication professionals, and ultimately to successfully promote their event.
Hiding or Priding? A Study of Gender, Race, and Gamer Status and Context on Avatar Selection • Robert Dunn, East Tennessee State University; Rosanna Guadagno, University of Alabama • We conducted an experiment to determine the effects of gender, race, online gamer status and game context had on avatar selection, based on eight metrics. As predicted, online gamers selected avatars that were taller, thinner, and more attractive than participants who did not play online games. Non-white participants selected avatars with lighter skin-tones, whereas white participants selected avatars with darker skin-tones. Contrary to predictions and previous research, male participants selected shorter avatars than female counterparts.
My Students will Facebook me but Won’t Keep up with my Online Course • Francine Edwards, Delaware State University • An examination of the current body of literature has found that despite the interest in transforming education to fit a growing body of technologically astute students, few studies have investigated the characteristics or competency of that population and their ability to meet with academic success in this digital era or an informational age. However, what has been revealed in the research is that assumptions about digital natives (students from grade K through college who represent the first generation to grow up with this new technology) may not be correct and that a focus on digital immigrants (individuals that did not grow up in this generation) face a similar set of challenges. While today’s college students are immersed and fluent in social media, consumer electronics and video games, they are not nearly as proficient when it comes to using digital tools in a classroom setting – thus countering the myth that academicians are dealing with a whole generation of digital natives. Other studies that have investigated the extent and nature of college students’ use of digital technologies for learning have found that students use a limited range of mainly established technologies and that use of collaborative knowledge creation tools, virtual worlds, and social networking sites was low. This study investigates the ability of digital natives to incorporate new technologies in the academic process and the challenge that digital immigrants as instructors face.
Live Tweeting At Work: The Use of Social Media in Public Diplomacy • Juyan Zhang, University of Texas at San Antonio; Shahira Fahmy, University of Arizona • This study used a survey to examine factors that affect adoption of social media in public diplomacy practice by foreign diplomatic practitioners in the United States. Results showed the key factors identified in the unified theory of acceptance and use of technology (UTAUT) framework: Effort expectancy, performance expectancy, social influence and attitudes, facilitating conditions, in addition to perceived credibility had positive influences on the adoption process. Findings also showed respondents most often used social networks (MySpace, Facebook, etc.) followed by video sharing sites, intranet, blogs, video conferencing, text messaging and Wiki. Further more women reported the use of social media than men, but on average, men used more different types of social media than their female counterparts. Finally gender, age and level of gross national income (GNI) appeared to have significant moderating effects on the adoption of social media in the context of public diplomacy.
Who are the heavy users of Social Network Sites among College Students? A Study of Social Network Sites and College Students • Ling Fang, Bowling Green State University; Louisa Ha, Bowling Green State University • The indulgence in social networking sites (SNS) among college students has drawn scholars’ attention and research interest. But who the heavy users of SNS among college students are and how SNS use in relation to cellular phone text messaging use, another popular medium, has not been studied. Based on a survey on 476 college students from 24 classes in a public university, this study focused on sociability gratifications and information searching gratifications with behavioral indicators as predictors of SNS use and examined their relationship between SNS usage and with text messaging use. Specifically, this study examined (1) the demographic predictors of college students’ SNS usage, (2) how sociability gratifications and information seeking gratification contribute to college students’ SNS usage, and (3) the relationship between college students’ cell phone usage and SNS usage. Results show a complementary relationship between SNS use and text-messaging use. Heavy users of SNS are most likely to be females and minority students and those who relied on SNS as a news medium.
Measuring, Classifying and Predicting Prosumption Behavior in Social Media • Louisa Ha, Bowling Green State University; Gi Woong Yun, Bowling Green State University • This paper compares college students’ and general population’s prosumption behavior in social media and proposes a set of measures of prosumption in online media settings with special emphasis on social media including a prosumption index which can be used in future studies on prosumption. We classify prosumption behavior in a quadrant of four main types along the two dimensions of production and consumption. A polarized trend of prosumption was observed.
How the Smartphone Is Changing College Student Mobile Usage and Advertising Acceptance: A Seven-Year Analysis • Michael Hanley, Ball State University • This study employs online surveys conducted between 2005-2011 to investigate college student smartphone versus feature phone content usage, and acceptance of mobile advertising. Ad acceptance is measured using six mobile advertising acceptance factors from the Wireless Advertising Acceptance Scale (Saran, Cruthirds & Minor, 2004). Results show that incentives are a key motivating factor for advertising acceptance, but the perceived risk associated with receiving mobile ads could become a significant barrier to ad acceptance.
Play global, cover local: News media, political actors and other Twitter users in the 2010 US Elections • Itai Himelboim, University of Georgia, Telecommunications; Hansen Derek, College of Information Studies/University of Maryland; Anne Bowser • In times these challenging times for traditional media, news organizations join social media platforms such as Twitter to attract new and existing audiences. On this field, they compete for attention against millions of users. This study examines the use of Twitter in four gubernatorial races by news media, political candidates and the general public of Twitter users. Examining patterns of follow relationships indicate two types of clusters. The local clusters include a subgroup of more densely interconnected users, in which local news media on Twitter and political candidates became hubs. The national clusters include a subgroup of more sparsely interconnected users, in which national media and online-only news sources play as hubs. Theoretical and practical implications for news media and political candidates are discussed.
The Real You?: Visual Cues and Comment Congruence on Facebook Profiles • Seoyeon Hong, University of Missouri; Edson Jr. Tandoc, University of Missouri-Columbia; Eunjin (Anna) Kim, University of Missouri; Bo Kyung Kim, University of Missouri, Missouri Journalism School; Kevin Wise, University of Missouri, School of Journalism • Despite current extensive interdisciplinary research, the impact of Facebook profiles has been the subject of little systematic study, though investigators have explored with other forms of social networking sites. The purpose of this study was to examine the effects of social cues in self-presentations and the congruence of other-generated comments with the self-presentation in people’s evaluations of a profile owner. A 2 (level of social cues; high vs. Low) X 2 (congruent vs. incongruent) X 2 (order) X 2 (messages) mixed-subject design was conducted with 106 college students as participants. The results showed that a profile owner was perceived less socially attractive when other-generated comments were incongruent with the profile owner’s self-presentation. Also, the profile owner was perceived to be more popular when there were more social cues available than when there were fewer social cues. Interestingly, an interaction effect between congruence and level of social cues suggested that perceived popularity was low in the incongruent condition regardless of level of social cue. This is consistent with the warranting theory that emphasized the significant role of information from the others in people’s judgment of self-presentations online. That is, no matter how people package themselves with extravagant self-presentations, it cannot be very successful without validation from others. Theoretical and practical implications were also discussed.
Red-Hot and Ice-Cold Web Ads: The Influence of Warm and Cool Colors in Web Advertising on Click-Through Rates • Kimberly Sokolik, Virginia Tech; James D. Ivory, Virginia Tech • Previous research has examined responses to advertisements featuring warm and cool colors, but such research with web advertisements is limited and consists of laboratory experiments rather than studies using natural data and actual consumer activity. This study compared the click-through rates of “”box”" and “”banner”" web ads with red and blue color schemes using data from more than 1.5 million ad impressions from 12 months of traffic on a popular news web site. Ads with red color schemes generated substantially higher click-through rates, particulary for box ads, though the effect of color was reduced in the case of banner ads.
Having a Blog in this Fight: Testing Competing Models of Selective Exposure to Political Blogs • Tom Johnson, University of Texas; Weiwu Zhang, Texas Tech University • This study tested two competing theories of selective exposure, the “”anticipated agreement hypothesis”" that suggests people will seek information about candidates they agree with and avoid contact with ones they disagree with and the “”issue publics hypothesis”" that asserts that voters consume information on issues they consider personally important. The study found indirect support for the anticipated agreement hypothesis as partisans relied heavily on candidate/party sites for information and reliance was linked to selective exposure.
A Winner Takes All? Examining Relative Importance of Motives and Network Effects in Social Networking Site Use • Mijung Kim; Jiyoung Cha, University of North Texas • Over the past several years, social networking sites (SNSs) have increasingly become an essential part of life for many U.S. Internet users. The present study explores the motives for using the three most-visited SNSs, Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn, and whether differences exist between the SNSs with respect to the motives for using each SNS. Furthermore, this study examines how motives and network size relevant variables affect SNS usage. Although the motives sought for the three SNSs were similar across the SNSs, the result demonstrated that the primary motives for using SNSs differed. The result also demonstrated that the motives behind the use of an SNS have a much stronger association with SNS usage than the perceived network externality and perceived personal network size of the SNS.
When Ordinary Citizens Produce Media Content: A Comparative Analysis of Most Popular and Random YouTube Videos • Eunseong Kim, Eastern Illinois University; Liz Viall, Eastern Illinois University • As the online video-sharing site, YouTube’s motto, “”Broadcast Yourself”" indicates, YouTube has taken a leading role as the platform that invites everyone to create and share video content with others. YouTube has also enjoyed unprecedented popularity among Internet users and become a representative example of user-generated content in the Web 2.0 era. When everyone is invited to participate in content creation, what do ordinary citizens create? The current body of research provides little information about what typical videos on YouTube look like and how they may be similar to or different from those videos that garner an extraordinary level of popularity (i.e., viral videos). To fill this void, 195 top favorited and most viewed videos on YouTube were analyzed and compared to 203 randomly selected YouTube videos. Findings indicate that typical (random) videos on YouTube exhibit different characteristics from most popular (top favorited and most viewed) videos on YouTube. The paper discusses differences and similarities between typical videos and most popular videos on YouTube.
The Effects of LCD Panel Type on Psychology of Video Game Players and Movie Viewers Ki Joon Kim; S. Shyam Sundar • As computer-based devices become the primary media via which users view movies and play interactive games, display technologies (e.g., LCD monitors) have focused increasingly on quality of video fidelity, with much debate surrounding the relative efficacy of different panel types of LCD monitors. A 3 (TN panel vs. S-IPS panel vs. S-PVA panel) x 2 (game vs. movie) between-subjects experiment was conducted to examine the effects of LCD panel type in facilitating regular viewing as well as enhanced interactive TV experiences. Preliminary data from the experiment showed that LCD panel and stimulus type as well as computer literacy were important factors affecting monitor users’ viewing and interaction experience. Limitations and implications for theory and ongoing research are discussed.
Multitasking across borders: Media multitasking behaviors in the U.S., Russia, and Kuwait • Anastasia Kononova, American University of Kuwait; Saleem Alhabash; Zasorina Tatyana; Diveeva Natalia; Kokoeva Anastasia; Anastasia Chelokyan • A cross-national study has been conducted to explore media multitasking behaviors among the young people in three countries: the U.S., Russia, and Kuwait (N=532). A theoretical model that was proposed in this research included factors predicting media multitasking (media ownership, socio-economic status, sensation seeking, and media use), two media multitasking variables (multitasking with media and multitasking with media and non-media activities), and media multitasking outcomes (perceived attention to media contents and perceived ease of media technology use). While some of the paths among the different variables were not statistically significant, the fact that model fit indices were in line with the acceptable rules of thumb qualified the data for analyzing the parameter estimates. The model was run with three samples, American, Russian, and Kuwaiti. Among others, the findings suggest to consider cultural and structural context to be taken into consideration in the analysis of media multitasking behaviors in foreign countries.
Hostile Media Perceptions: Coloring the (New) Media Red or Blue • Ammina Kothari, School of Journalism – Indiana University; Seong Choul Hong, Indiana University; Shuo Tang; Lars Willnat • Past research on the hostile media effect mainly focused on how people perceive media bias of traditional media, while in the current dynamic media environment mobile technology is changing how people consume media. This study expands the scope of current research and tests the interplay of bi-partisan media consumption, selective media exposure and the hostile media effect within the realm of both traditional and online mediascape. An analysis based on a national survey of 3,000 American adults detects a variance in the hostile media effect depending on demographic factors, media selection and media platform. Age, gender, and political affiliation contribute to the perception of media bias. Selective exposure to traditional bi-partisan media like newspapers, television and especially political talk shows also generate the hostile media effect. Online media consumption is a weak predictor of the hostile media effect: On the one hand, consumers of news websites, news aggregators or email news perceive a low level of media bias; on the other, news sources like blogs, social network sites or mobile phones are not indicators of the hostile media effect.
When Do Online Shoppers Appreciate Security Enhancement Efforts? Effects of Financial Risk and Security Level on Evaluations of Customer Authentication • Jong-Eun Roselyn Lee, Hope College; Shailandra Rao, CafeBots; Clifford Nass • As the popularity of online shopping grows, concerns about identity theft and fraud are increasing. While stronger customer authentication procedures may provide greater protection and hence benefit customers and retailers, security tends to be traded off against convenience. To provide insight into this security-convenience trade-off in customer authentication, we experimentally investigated how levels of authentication security and financial risk factors affect perception and evaluation of authentication systems. In two experiments, participants performed simulated purchasing tasks in the context of online shopping. The findings show that financial risk factors moderate the effects of security levels on consumers’ evaluation of authentication systems. In Experiment 1, participants rated the high-level security system as less convenient and more frustrating when the amount involved in the transactions was higher. On the other hand, Experiment 2, which introduced a more explicit risk for consumers (liability for fraudulent activities), showed that participants gave more positive ratings of the high-level security system under full liability than under zero liability. Taken together, the present research suggests that consumers’ perception and appreciation of authentication technologies may vary depending on the characteristics of the financial risk involved in the transaction process.
Understanding the “”Friend-Rich”": The Effects of Self-Esteem and Self-Consciousness on Number of Facebook Friends • Jong-Eun Roselyn Lee, Hope College; Eun-A (Mickey) Park, University of New Haven; Sung Gwan Park • The present research examined whether and how self-esteem and self-consciousness (private vs. public) predict number of social network friends, particularly in the context of Facebook use. It was predicted that self-esteem and private self-consciousness would have a negative association with number of Facebook friends while public self-consciousness and number of Facebook friends would show a positive association. In addition, it was hypothesized that self-esteem and public self-consciousness would have an interaction effect on number of Facebook friends. Data were collected from a cross-sectional survey data conducted with a college student sample in the U.S. (N=234). While private self-consciousness did not yield a significant association with number of Facebook friends, self-esteem had a negative association and public self-consciousness had a positive association with number of Facebook friends, which suggested that lower self-esteem and higher public self-consciousness would likely lead to more active friending, thereby resulting in a greater number of friends listed on their Facebook profile. Furthermore, the data supported the hypothesized interaction between self-esteem and public self-consciousness. Implications for number of Facebook friends as a social “”commodity”" are discussed.
Are You Following Me? A Content Analysis of TV Networks’ Corporate Messages on Twitter • Jhih-Syuan Lin, The University of Texas at Austin; Jorge Peña • This study analyzed the content of TV corporations’ messages in social networking sites by employing Bales’s IPA method. This study also explored the diffusion of information in social networking sites by examining users’ “”retweeting”" behavior. The findings showed that TV networks tended to employ more task than socioemotional communication across program genres. Also, giving suggestions was the most frequently used message strategy in the current sample. Additionally, socioemotional messages got retweeted more often than task-oriented messages. The findings suggest managerial implications for corporate message management and relationship-building efforts in social networking sites.
With a Little Help from My Friends: Motivations and Patterns in Social Media Use and Their Influence on Perceptions of Teaching Possibilities • Miglena Sternadori, University of South Dakota; Jeremy Littau, Lehigh University • This study explores what journalism and mass communication educators believe to be appropriate uses of social media as teaching and communication tools with students and alumni, including the motivations that drive these beliefs and the decisions that follow them. There was a negative relationship between age and gratifications from using Twitter and Facebook, and a positive relationship between educators’ use of these tools in the classroom and their perceptions of usefulness. The hypothesis that use of social media would lead to higher evaluation scores was only partially supported. A qualitative analysis of answers to open-ended questions identified five themes: (1) recognition of the importance of Twitter and Facebook to the study of mass communication; (2) ethical concerns about boundaries; (3) perceived negative judgment or praise from administrators or students for using social media; (4) digital divide concerns; (5) perceived disutility of Twitter and Facebook in comparison to platforms such as Blackboard as well as blogs and wikis. The results are discussed in the context of their theoretical implications for the Media Choice Model (MCM: Thorson & Duffy, 2006) as well as practical implications for educators considering ways to implement social networking in their teaching.
A Little World in My Hand —The Use of Smartphones Among Low Income Minority Women • xun Liu, california State University, Stanislaus; Ying Zhang • Under the guide of social cognitive theory, the current study investigated the use of smartphones among low-income minority women. Twenty-eight low income minority women were interviewed about their smartphone use patterns and their beliefs pertaining to self-efficacy, and outcome expectations. As the first study that explores smartphone use among this demographic group, the current research makes a unique and original contribution.
New TV Resistance: Barriers to Implementation of IPTV in the Living Room • Duen Ruey Liu, Shih Hsin University; Yihsuan Chiang, Shih Hsin University; Niann Chung Tsai, Shih Hsin University • Families relax in living rooms and watching TV should be carefree. Researchers care about interaction between human and machines of IPTV, the study are interpreted with theory of affordance by James Jerome Gibson (1979) and technology acceptance model (TAM) by Davis (1989). We add marketing strategies, program contents, interface operation, use experience and fear of technology of five external variables in attempt to propose IPTV TAM of future promotion and development of digital TV.
Color and cognition: The influence of Web page colors on cognitive inputs • Robert Magee, Virginia Tech • A Web page’s red color scheme seemed to lead participants to engage in rule-based processing, while a blue color scheme lead them to engage in associative processing. In an experiment (N = 211) with physical temperature and Web page color as between-subjects manipulated factors and Attitudes Toward Charities and Need For Cognition as a measured independent variables, participants were asked to view a Web page for a trade-based development organization. When participants experienced the sensation of physical cold, those who were cognitive misers tended to report less favorable attitudes toward the Web page. This interaction disappeared, however, when participants viewed a Web page that featured a red color scheme, as red seemed to have stimulated arousal and an increase in analytic rule-based cognitive processing. In addition, an accessible knowledge structure, participants’ general attitude toward charitable organizations, was a predictor of their impressions of that organization only when they viewed a red Web page. The implications of color and cognition for communication technology are discussed.
A Lesson Before Dying: Embracing Innovations for Community Engagement as a Survival Strategy for Media in Crisis. • Samuel Mwangi, Kansas State University • As media organizations confront an uncertain future unleashed by disruptive technologies, they are searching for ways to successfully navigate the changing information landscape. This paper argues that one way out of the present crises is for media to embrace a culture of innovation and use engaging communication technologies that are mutually beneficial to the media and to the communities they serve. The paper maps trends in media innovations and then reports on a unique innovation project that designed a new digital tool to help media re- engage their communities in new ways. The success of the project suggests that innovative tools and services that are specifically geared towards community engagement can provide a lifeline for media in crises as well as transform community news, information distribution and visualization, and impact community conversations, making new media technology a valued ally to media organizations and communities rather than a disruptive threat.
Coproduction or Cohabitation? Gatekeeping, Workplace, and Mutual Shaping Effects of Anonymous Online Comment Technology in the Newsroom • Carolyn Nielsen, Western Washington University • This study explored whether the technology that enables readers to post anonymous comments on the same platforms with newspaper journalists’ articles has transformed journalists’ workplaces or work practices. Data from a nationwide survey examined through the lens of mutual shaping found that journalists are mostly ignoring the technology, continuing to assert their territoriality, and seeing little impact of comments as artifacts mediating between editors and reporters. Mutual shaping is constrained by journalistic norms and practices.
Affect, Cognition and Reward: Predictors of Privacy Protection Online • Yong Jin Park, Howard University; scott campbell; Nojin Kwak, University of Michigan Ann Arbor • In recent years emotion and cognition have emerged as new dimensions for understanding media uses. This article examined the interplay between cognition and affect in Internet uses for privacy control as this is conditioned by reward-seeking rationale. A survey of a national sample was conducted to empirically test the relationship between affective concern and cognitive knowledge. We also tested for three-way interactions that consider reward-seeking as a third moderator. Findings revealed that concern did not directly play a meaningful role in guiding users’ protective behavior, whereas knowledge was found significant in moderating the role of concern. The interactive role of reward-seeking seems particularly salient in shaping the structure of the relationships. These findings suggest that the intersections between knowledge, reward, and concern can play out differently, depending on the levels of each. Policy implication in relation to users’ cognitive, affective, and reward-seeking rationalities are offered, and future research considerations are discussed.
Factors Influencing Intention to Upload Content on Wikipedia in South Korea: The Effects of Social Norms and Individual Differences • Naewon Kang, Dankook University, Korea; Namkee Park, University of Oklahoma; Hyun Sook Oh, Pyeongtaek University • This study examined the roles of social norms and individual differences in influencing Internet users’ intention to upload content on Wikipedia in South Korea. Using data from a survey of college students with users and non-users of Wikipedia (N = 185 and 158), the study found that the effect of social norms was minimal, while that of individual differences—self-efficacy, issue involvement, and ego involvement—was more important to account for the uploading intention.
Seeking Environmental Risk Information Online: Examining North Carolina’s Urban-Rural Divide • Laurie Phillips; Robert McKeever, UNC Chapel Hill; Daniel Riffe, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill; Kelly Davis, UNC School of Journalism and Mass Communication • Using statewide telephone survey data (N=406), this “”digital divide”" study oversampled rural households to explore urban-rural differences in Internet access, time online, and information-seeking about environmental risk. Although the access divide has closed, parallel regression analyses revealed urban-rural differences in demographic predictors of time online and information seeking. No urban-rural differences emerged in preference for Internet as an environmental risk source, though Internet use was a strong predictor of rural respondents’ sense of “”environmental confidence.”"
News Feed Indeed: Social media, Journalism and the Mass Self-Communicator • Sue Robinson, University of Wisconsin-Madison • This research takes up the Castells’ (2009) notion of the mass self-communicator, referring to the ability of citizens to employ digital technology to produce and disseminate information via vast networks. A hundred Madison, WI, residents were interviewed about their attitudes as potential mass self-communicators on blogs and social networking sites. Some reported posting content on their Facebook pages and other SNS material that helped them converse, understand new perspectives, prove their knowledge, document their presence on an issue, and mobilize others. Their acts of “”information witnessing”" – particularly during the Winter 2011 Madison protests – transformed them into news networkers in a way that altered the established information flows in this Midwestern city. Others rejected the opportunity as too public.
Country Reputation in the Age of Networks: An Empirical Analysis of Online Social Relations and Information Use • Hyunjin Seo, University of Kansas • This study identifies and examines effects of individuals’ online social relations and information use regarding other countries on their ratings of the reputation of those countries. Theoretical and operational definitions of the two variables are developed and used to establish and test a theoretical model accounting for how people form perceptions of other countries in the age of information technology and online social networking. A survey of South Korean Internet users provides the empirical data for this paper. The survey shows that negative information South Koreans get about the United States through their online social networks can have significant influence on their perceptions of the United States. In comparison, information they get through U.S.-based websites did not significantly influence their views of the United States. This study also shows that first-hand experience of visiting the United States remains the most significant positive predictor of South Koreans’ favorability toward the United States in this networked age. These results reinforce the importance of relationship-based networked public diplomacy. It is important that countries lay out digital media-based strategies that help build relationships with their foreign constituents rather than simply delivering information to them.
Explicating Use of ICTs in Health Contexts: Entry, Exposure, and Engagement • Dhavan Shah; Kang Namkoong, University of Wisconsin – Madison; Tae Joon Moon; Ming-Yuan Chih, University of Wisconsin – Madison; Jeong Yeob Han, University of Georgia • We explicate ‘use’ of eHealth systems, or more generally ‘use’ of a wide variety of information and communication systems (ITCs). A review of the literature makes clear that ‘use’ has been applied to a number of different operational measurements, each implying differences in meaning. To address this multiplicity of meanings, we propose and discuss three central meanings of eHealth ‘use,’ introduce likely applications of each, and consider potential submeanings and operationalizations: Entry into the system, Exposure to its content, and Engagement with the system. We argue that this three part distinction is critical to both conceptualizing and operationalizing ‘Use’ in meaningful and analytically useful way. Measurement and analysis strategies are discussed in relation to this concept explication.
Why Do People Play Social Network Games? • Dong-Hee Shin, Sungkyunkwan University; Tae-Yang Kim • Recently, Social Network Games (SNGs) over social network services have become popular and have spawned a whole new subculture. This study examines the perceived factors which contribute to an SNG user’s behaviors. It proposes an SNG acceptance model based on integrating cognitive as well as affective attitudes as primary influencing factors. Results from a survey of SNG players validate that the proposed theoretical model explains and predicts user acceptance of SNG very well. The model shows fine measurement properties and establishes the perceived playfulness and security of SNGs as distinct constructs. The findings also reveal that flow plays a moderation role that affects various paths in the model. Based on the results of this study, both the appropriate practical implications for SNG marketing strategies and the theoretical implications are provided.
Exploring the Immersion Effect of 3DTV in a Learning Context • Dong-Hee Shin, Sungkyunkwan University; Tae-Yang Kim • With the conceptual model of flow and immersion, this study investigates immersion/flow effects in an educational context. This study focuses on users’ experiences with 3DTV in order to investigate the areas of development as a learning application. For the investigation, the modified technology acceptance model (TAM) is used with constructs from expectation-confirmation theory (ECT). Users’ responses to questions about cognitive perceptions and continuous use were collected and analyzed with factors that were modified from TAM and ECT. While the findings confirm the significant roles by users’ cognitive perceptions, the findings also shed light on the possibility of 3DTV serving as an enabler of learning tools. In the extended model, the moderating effects of confirmation/satisfaction and demographics of the relationships among the variables were found to be significant.
The Factors Affecting the Adoption of Smart TV • Dong-Hee Shin, Sungkyunkwan University; Tae-Yang Kim • Smart TV, a new digital television service, has been rapidly developing. With the conceptual model of interactivity, this study empirically investigates the effects of perceived interactivity on the motivations and attitudes toward Smart TV. A model is created to validate the relationship of perceived interactivity to performance, attitude, and intention. Further, the model examines the mediating roles of perceived interactivity in the effect of performance on attitude toward Smart TV. Empirical evidence supports the mediating role of perceived interactivity. Implications of the findings are discussed in terms of building a theory of interactivity and providing practical insights into developing a user-centered Smart TV interface.
The Anonymous Chatter: Testing the Effects of Social Anonymity and the Spiral of Silence • Madeleine Sim; Jamie Lee; Kristle Kwok; Ee Ling Cha; Shirley S. Ho • Using the spiral of silence as the theoretical framework, this study examines the relationship between social anonymity in computer-mediated communication settings and opinion expression in Singapore; we conducted an experiment to assess participants’ use of avoidance and engagement strategies. Results indicate that social anonymity and future opinion congruency were significantly associated with opinion expression. Findings suggest that the lack of visual and status cues, rather than perceived anonymity, were more likely to elicit opinion expression.
The Differing Effects of Communication Mediation on Social-Network Site and Online Political Participation • Timothy Macafee; Matthew Barnidge, Hernando Rojas, University of Wisconsin – Madison • This study uses a national survey of 10 cities in Colombia to explore how communication mediation influences social-network site and other online political participation. We argue these two type of participation should be distinct and illustrate how attention to information and information dissemination affects them differently. Specifically, both offline and online information sharing lead to social-network site participation, while online information seeking and sharing predict other online political participation.
Social Media Policies for Professional Communicators • Daxton Stewart, Texas Christian University • As social media tools such as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube have become increasingly prevalent ways for people to share and connect, professional communicators have increasingly incorporated these tools into their daily practice. However, journalism, advertising and public relations practitioners have little formal guidance to help them navigate the benefits and risks of using these tools professionally. The codes of ethics of their professional fields have not been updated, and to date, social media policies have not been examined from an academic perspective. This study reviews 26 social media policies of journalism and strategic communication companies to find common themes and concerns and to suggest best practices for professional communicators using social media tools. These themes include transparency, balancing the personal and the professional, maintaining confidentiality, rules for “”friending,”" and other matters central to developing an effective social media policy.
An Exploration of Motives in Mobile Gaming: A Uses and Gratifications Approach. • Lakshmi N Tirumala, Texas Tech University; Weiwu Zhang, Texas Tech University; Anthony Galvez • Global sales of video games have increased to $54.9 billion in 2009 and are expected to earn $68.3 billion by 2012. Although video games are mostly being played on devices like PlayStation, recent advances in mobile phone technologies has created a new platform for video game play. Given the unique nature of the gaming experience this study proposes to examine motivational dimensions of mobile gaming from a uses and gratifications approach.
The role of third-person effects in the context of Facebook: Examining differences in perceived consumption and impact between self and others • Mina Tsay, Boston University • The immense popularity and adoption of Facebook in the lives of more than 500 million users has sparked the attention of new media scholars. While much is known about Facebook members’ motivations, use, and gratifications of this social networking site, minimal attention has been given to examining the perceived consumption and impact of Facebook on users themselves versus others. Applying the third-person effect (TPE) hypothesis to the context of social media, this study (N = 375) investigates: 1) differences between estimated Facebook effects on self versus others, 2) relationship between perceptions of Facebook use and estimated impact of Facebook on self versus others, and 3) association between perceived desirability of Facebook as a social medium and estimated Facebook influence on self versus others. The aforementioned relationships are also moderated by gender and age. Implications for the relevance of TPE on users of social networking sites are discussed.
Will Communication Journals Go Online? An Analysis of Journal Publishing Formats and Impact Factors • Nur Uysal, University of Oklahoma; Joe Foote, University of Oklahoma; Jody Bales Foote • Academic journals are regarded as a platform on which scholarly communication takes place to validate and disseminate academic knowledge. They provide a means to examine the question whether online/electronic publishing improves the dissemination of quality information. The primary focus of this study is the migration of academic journals from print to hybrid (print and electronic) to electronic format. It focuses on journals in six disciplines, including communication/journalism. The study addresses three research questions: a) To what extent have communication journals embraced electronic publishing? b) How do online journals in communication compare to those in business, psychology, geology, meteorology, and physiology? c) What is the relationship between journal publishing format and impact factor in the journal sample and in communication journals? Content analysis of all journals listed in the ISI database (n=716) was conducted regarding publishing format, publihsing start date, publisher etc. In order to understand the relationship between impact factor and publishing format a multiple regression analysis was deployed. The results showed that on the contrary to forecasts journals experience a slow migration to e-only publihsing format. They stick to hybrid publishing on whihc this study showed that there is a positive relationship.
Use of Social Networking Sites: An Exploratory Study of Indian Teenagers • Peddiboyina vijaya lakshmi, Sri Padmavati Women’s University • Social Networking Sites have become popular and have become a vital part of social life in India, especially among teenagers. . There is no in-depth study as to how and why Indian teenagers engage with social networking sites. This study, using focus groups, explored the experiences of teenagers with social networking sites. Information from the groups was analyzed in terms of their usage of social networking sites, profile construction, online vs offline friendships, and extending friendships beyond cyberspace. The gender variations and social norms in how teens are using these sites are other possible areas that require attention.
Technological Constructions of Reality: An Ontological Perspective • Cindy Vincent, University of Oklahoma • This paper seeks to address how ontological constructions are shaped through technological dependency. Depending on the exposure and usage of hypermediated technology, individuals will have different constructs of reality to coincide with the styles of technology they use. Currently, there is a gap in research in addressing the impact of technological dependency on individual constructs of reality. This paper seeks to make progress in identifying a hypermediated technological ontological perspective and recommendations for future research.
Followers, Friends, and Fame: Political Structural Influence on Candidate Twitter Networks • Ming Wang, University of Wisconsin-Madison; Alexander Hanna; Ben Sayre; JungHwan Yang, University of Wisconsin-Madison; Michael Mirer; Young Mie Kim, University of Wisconsin-Madison; Dhavan Shah • To understand the antecedents and consequences of political candidates’ online social networks, we captured egocentric Twitter networks of candidates who ran for the 2010 midterm elections. To be more specific, our data include information on a sample of political candidates running for the 2010 congressional and gubernatorial elections as well as their connections to their followers and friends on Twitter. Adopting a social network analysis approach and focusing on political structural determinants, we find that Senate and gubernatorial candidates had both larger follower networks and friend networks. Furthermore, Republican candidates had larger follower networks and incumbent candidates had smaller friend networks on Twitter. But neither network size measures affected whether the candidates were likely to win the elections or not. Our results showed strong political structural influence on how candidates managed their online social networks.
Social Network Sites Use, Mobile Personal Talk and Social Capital • wenjing xie, Southern Illinois University Carbondale • Using data collected from a nationally representative survey, this study explores social network site use and mobile communication among teenagers as well as their influences on social capital. We found that, older teenagers tend to be more likely to use social network site. Among social network site users, older teenagers and teen girls use SNS more intensively. Hierarchical regression analysis shows that adoption of social network site and mobile personal talks not only have main effects on teenagers’ network capital, but also interact with each other. Intensity of SNS use also significantly predicts teenager’s civic and political participation among SNS users. Moreover, join groups on SNS or not interacts with mobile personal talks to predict civic participation.
Incidental Exposure to Online News: An Insight from the Pew Internet Project Introduction • Borchuluun Yadamsuren; Sanda Erdelez; Joonghwa Lee, University of Missouri; Esther Thorson, University of Missouri • Incidental exposure to online news (IEON) is becoming more prominent as people spend more time on the Internet. However, little research on this behavior has been done in the field of mass communication. Through a secondary data analysis of the Pew Internet & American Life Project study (2010), this study aimed to explore association of the IEON in two contexts (news reading and non-news reading) using various demographic, technology usage, and news exposure variables. Findings of the present study suggest that both types of IEON are positively associated with higher education, home access to the Internet, strong interest in news, and online news use. However, there is no correlation between either types of IEON and legacy media use. This study extends the research on online news consumption and incidental exposure to online news. The findings have important implications for online media business.
Walled Gardens?: Social Media and Political Disaffection among College Students in the 2008 Election • Masahiro Yamamoto, Washington State University; Matthew Kushin, Utah Valley University • This study evaluates the ways in which social media influenced political disaffection among young adults during the 2008 presidential election campaign. The effects of social media, online expression, and traditional Internet sources on political cynicism, skepticism, and apathy were examined using data from an online survey of college students. Results show that attention to social media for campaign information is positively related to cynicism and apathy. Online expression has a positive effect on skepticism. Implications are discussed for the role of social media in bringing a historically disengaged demographic group into the political process.
Motivations for and Consequences of Participating in Online Research Communities • Juyoung Bang, Samsung Electronics; Seounmi Youn, Emerson College; James Rowean, Emerson College; Michael Jennings, Communispace Corporation; Manila Austin, Communispace Corporation • Utilizing the functional approach of attitudes, this study identified the motivations that consumers have for attitudes toward participation in online research communities: knowledge, utilitarian, value-expressive, ego-defensive, social, and helping the company. Further, this study explored the influences of respective motivations on consumers’ sense of identification with communities, which subsequently affects consumers’ feeling heard by companies, community loyalty, and brand trust. Online survey data (n=1,461) supported the hypothesized relationships and offered theoretical and managerial implications.
Opting Into Information Flows: Partial Information Control on Facebook • Leticia Bode • While we know a great deal about purposive information seeking online, and we have some understanding of incidental exposure to information online, Web 2.0 challenges this dichotomy. Social media represent a new type of information environment, in which users have partial control over the information to which they are exposed. While users opt into information flows, they are then exposed to information they might not have sought out themselves. This study is a first step in understanding the dissemination of information in this environment, as well as the effects of exposure to such information. Utilizing survey data relating to the specific case of the popular online social network, Facebook, the study tests for likelihood of exposure to information in this environment, as well as the relationship between exposure and opinion change. Results indicate that users do recognize exposure to information in this new environment, and exposure to information in that medium significantly increases the likelihood of opinion change as a result.
Building Frames Link by Link: The Linking Practices of Blogs and News Sites • Mark Coddington, University of Texas-Austin • This study uses content analysis and depth interviews to examine the use and conceptions of hyperlinks among news web sites, independent bloggers, and blogging journalists, particularly the way that they contributed to episodic, thematic, and conflict news frames. News sites’ links functioned thematically to provide context through background information produced by a limited body of traditional, non-opinionated sources. Bloggers’ links, however, served as a more social connection while pointing toward immediate, episodic news issues.
For Love or Money?: The Role of Non-Profits in Preserving Serious Journalism • Emily Donahue Brown, University of Texas • This study employed elite, in-depth interviews with executives of online non-profit journalism organizations to ascertain their sense of mission, audience and the model’s potential for long-term relevance. They see their organizations assuming investigative, in-depth reporting roles vacated by mass media. The online non-profit model enables deeper interactive engagement with local audiences. Securing stable funding and broader audiences are critical concerns. Cross-platform collaboration is crucial to establishing brand; engaging younger audiences is not a major priority.
Linked World: Applying Network Theory to Micro-Blogging in China • Fangfang Gao • Micro-blogging is one of the latest Web 2.0 technologies with great impact in the world. Drawing on network theory, this study focused on the recent micro-blogging phenomenon in China, analyzing the characteristics of micro-blogs. Content analyzing the secondary data from Sina micro-blogs, this study found that lifestyle and entertainment/celebrity were the most popular and the most reposted topics in Chinese micro-blogs. Features of micro-blogs such as topic, authorship, and multimedia usage can predict their emergence as hubs in the Chinese micro-blogging network. Implications of results were discussed.
Will the Revolution be Tweeted or Facebooked? Using Digital Communication Tools in Immigrant Activism • Summer Harlow, University of Texas-Austin; Lei Guo, University of Texas at Austin • Considering the debate over U.S. immigration reform and the way digital communication technologies increasingly are being used to spark protests, this study examines focus group discourse of immigration activists to explore how digital media are transforming the definitions of “”activism”" and “”activist.” Analysis suggests technologies are perhaps pacifying would-be activists, convincing them they are contributing more than they actually are. Thus, “”armchair activism”" that takes just a mouse click is potentially diluting “”real”" activism.
Go to the People: A Historical Case Study & Policy Analysis Of Massachusetts and Open Standard Document Formats • Andrew Kennis • In 2004, Massachusetts announced it would switch the format of its electronic documents for its public records from a proprietary, to an ostensibly open standard. My case study examines the struggles, controversies, and successes of the monumental Massachusetts policy. It is an epic tale and one that is casually known to most internet policy scholars, if not the general public. This case study not only closely details the development of what was a monumental policy initiative, but also undertakes a critical analysis of the history observed in Massachusetts. A policy argument is posited which calls for the organization of democratic, grassroots-based support for the furtherance of an open standard document format not developed or maintained by a corporation which currently monopolizes the office suite market. An “”open coalition”" is called upon to undertake a public awareness and grassroots lobbying campaign, which would connect the open source community to the cause of adopting a genuinely open standard document format by tying open source and standard initiatives together.
The effect of emotional attachment to mobile phone on usage behavior: Meditation effect of deficient self-regulation and habit • Mijung Kim • Considering pervasiveness of mobile phones, the literature of media use has focused on a wide range of predictors of mobile phone usage behaviors such as motivations, gratifications, self-efficacy, personality traits, media dependency, and demographic characteristics. Nonetheless, the existing theoretical models focusing on rational or utilitarian media usage cannot reflect the emotional and relational aspect of usage behaviors. In other words, what past studies of media use has not paid attention is the possibility that users develop relationship with media and emotional attachment to media including both cognitive and affective based media-self connections. Thus, focusing on psychological connections between users and media, this study demonstrates users’ emotional attachment to mobile phones, influence their mobile phone usage behavior. Specifically, this study focuses on the mediation effects of deficient self-regulation and habits.
Crude comments and concern: Online incivility’s effect on risk perceptions of emerging technologies • Peter Ladwig; Ashley Anderson, University of Wisconsin-Madison • Uncivil rhetoric has become a growing aspect of American political discussion and deliberation. This trend is not only confined to traditional media representations of deliberation, but also online media such as blog comments. This study examines online incivility’s effect on risk perception of an emerging technology, nanotechnology. We found that reading can polarize audiences’ attitudes of risk perception of nanotechnology along the lines of religiosity, efficacy, and support for the technology.
Motivations and Usage Patterns of Online News: Use of Digital Media Technologies and Its Political Implications • Shin Haeng Lee, University of Washington – Seattle; ChangHee Choi, School of Journalism, Indiana University at Bloomington • With an interest in contextualized use of new communication technologies and its implications, this study examines the relationship of individuals’ motivations for news consumption to their frequencies and patterns of online news use and attempts to explain the role of online features in the news consumption by dividing online activities into active and passive usage patterns. Based on a secondary analysis of data collected by the Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project that conducted a national survey on the media and technology consumption of individuals in 2010, this study aims to identify online users’ motivations for using online news and to examine relationships between user motivations for news consumption and usage patterns of online news services. The findings of this study demonstrate associations of individuals’ different motivations with not only their usage frequencies but also patterns of online news services. The results also suggest that the examination of various activities engaged with different functions the Internet provides should be considered in studies of what motivates people to experience new practices in using web-based media. Given different modes of Internet usage in getting news, this study shed light on the important role of new tools or functions web-based media provide in online practices its users perform as well as the examination of what contents or services they consume or engage with. Finally, the study suggests that scholars should consider for future research the investigation of individuals’ different practices online in using news, contingent on their motivations for media use.
Online users’ news consumption practices and technological tools • Shin Haeng Lee, University of Washington – Seattle • Online users’ different motivations with respect to news consumption lead to different practices in using news media and related ICTs. However, media institutional actors endeavor to hold their power as a traditional gatekeeper even on the Web. In this sense, online users’ activities can be explained with not only traditional mass communication models but also individual motivations for social networking. This paper allows for an explanation in which the application of new ICTs to web-based media reflects institutional actors’ attempts to get access to arenas that draw larger audiences online. Likewise, individual actors who use shared digital network technologies with a motivation for human interactivity play a much more dynamic role in reconfiguring a distinctive flow and patterns of news and information on the Web from traditional communication models. Thus, digital network technological tools can be considered to not only provide online users with more opportunities to access alternative sources of news and information but also allow news media institutions to appropriate technologies for new opportunities to maintain control over users and their participations through technologies in order to reinforce their communicative power. In an effort to examine the consequences of the use of new technologies in news consumption, future research should therefore take into account institutional as well as individual actors’ practices in a process of interaction between their motives and tools for satisfying their needs in the historical and cultural context.
Issue Information and Technological Choice in a Senate Election Campaign: News, Social Media, Candidate Communications, and Voter Learning • Jason A. Martin, Indiana University School of Journalism • As candidates, the news media, and much of the public increasingly focus on digital and mobile media, it is important to understand the impact of these communication technologies in a variety of election contexts. This paper addressed that research problem by asking citizens about their use of various election information resources and their knowledge about key issues in a U.S. Senate campaign. A representative survey of randomly selected voters (n = 220, 50.9% response rate) in one of the nation’s 20 most populous cities was conducted immediately following the November 2010 Senate midterm election. Respondents were asked how frequently they used traditional and digital news media, social media, and campaign communications, including both advertising and candidate websites. A hierarchical regression model including media use, alternate information sources, motivation measures, and demographics revealed that newspaper use and online news use were the most important independent predictors of issue knowledge, followed by voting status and general civics knowledge. Also, newspaper use and news website use were not correlated, indicating that they were similarly but separately effective in influencing voter issue learning. On the other hand, blog use, social media use, and campaign website use did not have significant effects on issue learning after controls. These findings indicate that although citizens had a greater range of information available to them than ever before, they preferred traditional campaign content and learned the most from the news media’s printed word even as they diversified the platforms on which they received that election news.
Perceived Credibility of Mainstream Newspapers and Facebook • Andrew Nynka, University of Maryland; Raymond McCaffrey, University of Maryland • This study examines whether consumers perceived differences in the credibility of news from a mainstream newspaper compared to a social media web site where a friend provides a link to a story. Measures indicated significant differences across four indices, with a New York Times story rated higher in terms of professionalism, authority, and information, while participants indicated they were more likely to provide a link to the friend’s Facebook story on their own Facebook page.
The Roles of Descriptive Norms and Communication Frequency in Forming Information Communication Technology Adoption Intention • Yi Mou, University of Connecticut; Hanlong Fu • Previous studies have not examined the roles of descriptive norms and communication frequency in the process of information communication technology adoption. This study aims to fill the gap using podcast as an example. Results show that descriptive norm is an additional significant predictor of adoption intention. Injunctive norms play a moderating role in the relationship between communication frequency and descriptive norms. However, frequent communication in one’s social networks does not necessarily reduce the discrepancy between an individual’s beliefs and perceived others’ beliefs related to podcast using. Implications for future studies are also discussed.
Look At Me Now: The Need To Belong And Facebook Use • Stephen Prince, Brigham Young University; Adam Anderson; Sarah Connors • The objective of this study was to examine if an individual’s need to belong was associated with specific types of participatory Facebook activities, particularly those that might provide functional substitutes for more traditional interpersonal interaction and involvement with others. A secondary objective was to determine if gender mediated the relationship between need and activity frequency. Data were collected via an online survey (N = 398) administered to Facebook users ranging in age from 14 to 73 (M = 25.93). Our results indicate that those individuals with the greatest need to belong were more likely than those with the lowest need to update their Facebook status on a regular basis, tag photographs, and to use Facebook Chat with a larger number of their friends. Our findings also suggest gender impacts usage patterns based on need to belong. Men with high need are more likely to use Facebook for more interactively immediate forms of communication, such as chatting, than women. Women with high need were more likely than those with low need to engage in activities that were more designed to draw attention to the individual rather than to create an immediate means of two-way interaction.
Consumer Motivations and the Use of QR Codes • Jennifer Seefeld, University of Nebraska – Lincoln; Meghan Collins, University of Nebraska – Lincoln • The development of QR codes and the increase of mobile phones among college students has developed a new media outlet. Many companies are investing in mobile marketing campaigns but there is little academic research on QR codes. This pilot study attempts to bridge this gap in literature. It analyzes the view of advertising agencies as well as the motivations and knowledge of QR codes in the target market of college students.
New Media in Social Relations: The Cell Phone Use among College Students in Building and Maintaining Friendships • Ivy Shen, University of Oklahoma • This study explores the role of cell phone in maintaining and establishing friendships among college students. A comparison between the cell phone use and face-to-face communication was drawn to see which communication approach is preferred by those young people in terms of supporting friendships. Gender’s affect on college students’ attitudes toward the cell phone use in friendship maintenance and establishment was also examined. The results demonstrate that the cell phone does help in maintaining friendships. College students prefer using the cell phone to having face-to-face conversations to maintain the relationships. Yet, face-to-face interaction turns out to be more preferable in initiating friendships. The findings also suggest that gender is not an influential factor in college students’ cell phone use in the connections with friends.
From Stereoscopy to 3D HD Image:A Review of 3D HDTV Diffusion from the Perspective of Technology Adoption • Xu Song • 3D HDTV is in its early days. 3D technology still needs to be improved to be ready for mass promotion in the market. This study reviews the 3D HDTV technology development and its diffusion in society. Based on the review of the current 3D HDTV adoption situation, individual and social factors which may influence the adoption of 3D HDTV are identified. Some factors such as media technology use and attitude are oriented from the individual difference; some factors such as cost and health risks focus on social aspects. This study analyzes the challenges faced by 3D HDTV diffusion and provides some recommendations for the success of 3D HDTV diffusion.
The Bottom Line: The Negative Influences of Technology on the Good Work and Ethics of Journalism • Ian Storey, Colorado State University • New communication technologies have some positive influences on journalism, but overall have added to the decline of “”good work”" by journalists who are pressured to publish sooner in a culture of immediacy. This immediacy has serious consequences on the profession of journalism and the practitioners of it. In the pursuit to be first, news agencies are creating ethical problems that include providing the public with unverified information and failing to adequately deliberate about their actions.
Gift Economy: Contributors of Functional Online Collaborations • Yoshikazu Suzuki, University of Minnesota Twin Cities • As the Internet transformed into a social platform following Web 2.0, active audience participation and commons-based peer production has been argued as an alternative arena of production for socially and culturally meaningful artifacts. Past literatures have mainly focused on the societal and cultural implications of such change in the landscape of contemporary Internet. However, despite the significant economic implications of peer production, existing literatures remain silent to investigating the phenomenon through the theoretical scope of economic systems. The present study is a qualitative investigation of user contributions and collaborations aimed provide an alternative understanding of the phenomenon of online collaboration through the scope of gift economy.
Reciprocity in social network games and generation of social capital • Donghee Yvette Wohn, Michigan State University • Social network games—games that incorporate network data from social network sites—use exchange between players as a main mechanism of play. However, the type of exchange facilitated by the game is both social and economical. Players get an immediate reward by the system by initiating an exchange with another player, but they can also anticipate an unspecified return from that player. In this dual-exchange environment where reciprocity is triggered by two different stimuli, does reciprocity generate social capital? This paper describes a longitudinal experiment using a Facebook game (N=89) to examine the effect of behavior and affect on social capital development among zero-sum acquaintances. Reciprocity indicated a significant but small main effect. Affective measures—trust and copresence, but not intimacy—were positive indicators of social capital.
Consumer’s purchase power and ICT diffusion: Theoretical framework and cross-national empirical study • Xiaoqun Zhang • Combining the theories of Diffusion of Innovations Theory and Consumer Theory, this paper constructs a three dimensional framework for the diffusion process of ICTs. This framework shows how the s-shape curve changes when the average purchase power of a nation increases. Hence, it explains the digital divide between different nations due to the economic gaps. The hypotheses based on this framework are proposed and justified by the cross-national empirical studies.
Narcissism, Communication Anxiety, Gratifications-sought on SNS Use and Social Capital among College Students in China • pei zheng; Hongzhe wang • This study investigates whether and how gratifications, narcissism and communication anxiety impact people’s social network sites (SNS) use and perceived social capital. Firstly, a factor analysis of a survey data of SNS users (N=581) outlined a set of specific gratifications obtained from Renren, the most popular Chinese social network site. Four aspects of gratifications-sought (self-expression and presentation, peer pressure, social networking maintenance, and information seeking) have been identified. Then Pearson correlation showed narcissism significantly related to identified gratifications and SNS use, while communication anxiety was partially related to them; Intensity of SNS use was positively related to social capital. After that, hierarchical regression revealed that gratifications were the most powerful predictors for SNS use, while narcissism and intensity predicted social capital powerfully. Moreover, the initial significant relationship of narcissism to intensity of SNS use became insignificant when gratifications were entered in subsequent step into the regression, suggesting a mediation effect occurred.
The emerging network paradigm in computer-mediated communication: A structure analysis of scholarly collaboration network • Aimei Yang • As the important influence of social networks on communication increasingly being recognized by scholars, a growing number of studies have applied the network perspective to study online communication. This article extensively reviewed the major research topics, patterns of publications, and the structure of scholarly collaboration of an emerging sub-field of online communication research: research into online networks. Findings of this study provide not only an overview of a growing new sub-field but also a baseline that will enable future scholars to see where the sub-field began and trace its shift over time.
The Clearer, the Better?: The Effect of Sufficient Clarification and Specificity of Risk Disclosure in Broadcast Direct-To-Consumer Advertising • Ho-Young (Anthony) Ahn, U of Tennessee; Lei Wu, University of Tennessee; Eric Haley, U of Tennessee • This study examined the effectiveness of clarifying the limitation of broadcast DTCA and the disclosure specificity. Results of a randomized 2 x 2 online experiment (n=235) indicated that the ad featuring numerical disclosure without the ad-limitation statement produced more favorable attitude and trustfulness than (1) the ad featuring numerical disclosure with the ad-limitation statement, and (2) the ad featuring general disclosure without the ad-limitation statement. The ad presenting general disclosure with the ad-limitation statement earned more trust than that presenting general disclosure without the ad-limitation statement. Perceived trustfulness did not guarantee favorable attitude toward the ad. The implications for researchers and DTCA advertisers are discussed.
Practitioner Views of Comparative Advertising: A Twenty-Year Update • Fred Beard, University o Oklahoma • A replication of a survey of senior advertising creative practitioners revealed there has likely been neither a significant increase or decrease in the use of comparative advertising since the late-1980s, although the findings also show their beliefs remain quite favorable toward the tactic. In addition, respondents rated both comparative and noncomparative advertising effective for achieving almost all the same objectives and outcomes and under almost all the same conditions that the original study’s respondents did. Differences between the original survey and its replication suggest valuable directions for future research.
Science, Restraint, and J. Edgar Hoover: Building and Maintaining the FBI Brand, 1933 to 1972 • Matthew Cecil, South Dakota State University; Jennifer Tiernan, South Dakota State University; Didem Koroglu, South Dakota State University • This study argues that J. Edgar Hoover’s disciplined focus on the FBI brand and on accruing brand equity and social capital was a key factor in the Bureau’s dramatic growth from a bureaucratic backwater into an iconic giant in American society. The success of FBI branding during the Hoover era offers an early, normative model of how to generate brand equity on a nationwide scale.
Children’s Prime-Time Food Commercials in China: A Content Analysis of National and Provincial TV Channels • Xiaoduo Wang, Ohio University; Hong Cheng, Ohio University • In this content analysis of children’s prime-time TV commercials (N = 761) in China, two national channels (CCTV-1 and CCTV-Children) were compared with two channels (SXTV and HNTV) at the provincial level. Particular attention was paid to food product categories, promotional claims, eating occasions and locales, and characters’ body sizes. It was found that while China’s national channels were more likely to promote healthier food products and eating locales, its provincial channels tended to advertise more high-calorie food products, away-from-home eating locales, and underweight characters. Possible reasons and managerial implications of these disparities in the national and provincial TV commercials—a new and important finding about advertising in this booming market—were discussed.
Brand Placement in the Mosaic Screen: How Placement, Animation, and Onset Timing Impact Viewer Attention • Glenn Cummins, Texas Tech University College of Mass Communications; Jillian Lellis; Robert Meeds • Concerns over ad avoidance have led advertisers and content producers to explore novel forms of co-presentation of commercial and television content. We report on two studies that used eye tracking to examine one possible vehicle for co-presentation, a mosaic-style presentation of televised sports. Evidence demonstrated the effectiveness of this technique, as viewers did attend to the inserted brands. Moreover, attention varied dependent upon spatial location of the insertion, use of animation, and timing of onset.
Seeing the Big Picture: Multitasking and Memory for the Ad • Brittany Duff, University of Illinois- Urbana Champaign; Sela Sar, Iowa State University; Sangdo Oh, UIUC; Yulia Lutchyn, U of Tennessee; Sydney Chinchanachokchai, U of Illinois • While media multitasking is said to be an increasing behavior for consumers, little work has been done looking at ads exposed during multitasking. Multitasking is largely thought to have detrimental effects for consumer memory, particularly toward ads encountered during these times. However, there may be situations and individuals for which multitasking does not cause a detriment to performance. Two studies explore how holistic and systematic processing (either primed, state or mood induced) may affect both individual propensities toward multitasking as well as memory for the ads exposed during multitasking.
Responses to User-Generated Brand Videos: The Persuasion Inference Model • Chang-Dae Ham, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign; Esther Thorson, University of Missouri • User-generated brand videos are online video contents created and shared by ordinary people, collectively describing a brand. Based on the concept of the Marketplace Metacognition (Wright 2002), this study proposes a simultaneous process of the Persuasion Inference Model in which two different metacognitions i.e., persuasion knowledge (PK) and persuasion acceptance (PA) interact with each other in response to user-generated vs. advertiser-produced brand videos. In particular, the impact of persuasion knowledge (PK), evoked from recognizing message source’s motives of persuasion intention, was significantly mitigated when persuasion acceptance (PA) was aroused by the brand video’s strong emotional appeal.
Consumer Attitude Toward Product Placement in the Movies: The Hierarchical Model of Individual Differences • Ilwoo Ju, University of Tennessee; Spencer Tinkham, University of Georgia • This study examines the influence of six individual differences (self-concept clarity, need for emotion, consumer susceptibility to interpersonal influence, attention to social comparison information, need for cognition, and transportability) on consumer attitude toward product placement in the movies. The results show statistically significant relationships between three hierarchical levels of individual differences and attitude toward product placement in the movies. Two dimensions of attitude toward product placement in the movies exhibited substantially different patterns of relationships to these individual differences. The theoretical and practical implications will be discussed.
Think Smart: Smartphone User’s Intention to Accept Mobile Advertising • Jong-Hyuok Jung, Syracuse University; Yongjun Sung; Wei-Na Lee • This study explores motivations that influence smartphone users’ intention to accept mobile advertising. In order to accomplish this research objective, the relationships among various factors identified from past literature were tested via online survey. The empirical findings from the current study suggest that consumer’s attitude toward mobile advertising from his or her previous experience is the most powerful predictor of intention to accept mobile advertising on smartphone. In addition, consumer perception of the smartphone as a compatible device that fits with individual life style and the social benefits of using a smartphone predict intention to accept mobile advertising among smartphone users.
Direct-to-consumer prescription drug websites for stigmatized illnesses • Hannah Kang, University of Florida; Soontae An, Ewha Womans University • Given the growing importance of Internet as a source of health information, this study evaluated whether DTC prescription drug websites for stigmatized illnesses contained stigma-reducing components. We examined the content of first-level and second-level web pages in 88 stand-alone websites for 15 different stigmatized conditions. Results showed that on the homepages, textual cues and visual cues were rarely offered, especially for onset controllability. On the second layer, 22.7 percent of websites offered the three components together. Onset controllability (52.3 percent) and recategorization (54.5 percent) were the more prevalent, while offset controllability (38.6 percent) was relatively less frequent. Implications of the finding were discussed from health theory perspectives.
Assessing Circumplex Model as an Alternative Approach for Measuring Brand Personality • Chang Won Choi, Hankuk University of Foreign Studies; Hyoungkoo Khang, University of Alabama; Yoo-Kyung Kim, Hankuk University of Foreign Studies • In responding to the limitations of the factor approach to brand personality, this study aims to suggest Circumplex model that demonstrates the correlations among the brand personality attributes. The results show that brand personality traits are related to each other in a highly systematic mode. Two dominant factors, activity and potency, were extracted and most brand personality attributes were evenly distributed around the circumference of these two dimensions. To some extents, thus, brand personality attributes are considered to be combinations of these two dimensions. In addition, the finding showed that brand personality items were identified into eight facets, youth, cheerfulness, warmheartedness, tradition, faithfulness, ascendancy, leadership and innovation. This study is expected to provide a theoretical foundation of brand personality studies, complement limitations of the five-factor model, and serve as a practical implication for creating varied brand related strategies in marketing and advertising. Applicability and implication of the findings as well as suggestions for further research are discussed.
When Does Green Advertising Work? — The Modertating Role of Product Type • Ying Kong, Towson University; Lingling Zhang • Using environmental appeals to promote products is a popular marketing technique. However, little is known about how the effectiveness of green appeals varies across different product categories. The purpose of this study is to examine whether and to what extent green appeals in advertising are effective and how that effectiveness differs between products with more vs. less environmental impact. Using the theoretical frameworks of ad-product fit hypothesis, our two product types (more harmful vs. less harmful) x two appeal types (green appeal vs. non-green appeal) experiment shows that ads with a green appeal are more effective for more-harmful products, whereas for less-harmful products, there is no significant difference between a green and a non-green appeal. Furthermore, cognitive response was found to mediate the interaction effect of green appeal and product type on ad persuasiveness. Theoretical and practical implications of the findings are discussed.
Country-of-Origin Cues in Cross-Border Strategic Brand Alliance: How Do Advertisers Do it? • Jin Kyun Lee, University of Wisconsin Oshkosh; Wei-Na Lee • This study explores the effects of cross-border strategic brand alliance (SBA) through two studies. A content analysis of magazines ad found that cross-border SBA was a dominant communication strategy. Follow-up experimental study confirmed that subjects in the low COO fit condition were more likely to recall partner brand’s product category and brand name than those in the high COO fit condition. Discussions and suggestions for future research in this area are provided.
Learning from the competition: Analysis of advertising appeals for healthy foods and unhealthy foods • Jung-Sook Lee, Towson University • Food advertising appeals are analyzed from 173 food advertisements found in 12 issues of People magazine from January through December 2008. Findings indicate that both taste appeals (30%) and emotional appeals (31%) are more common than nutritional appeals (22%). The other common appeals are new product appeals and convenience appeals. Taste appeals are dominant in food advertising for both healthy foods and unhealthy foods. Nutritional appeals are also found to a similar extent in ads for unhealthy foods as in ads for healthy foods. However, emotional appeals, are used more frequently in ads for unhealthy foods than in ads for healthy foods.
Combining Product Placements and Spot Advertising: Forward Encoding, Backward Encoding, and Image Activation Effects • Joerg Matthes, University of Zurich; Florence Horisberger • Although brand placements are frequently accompanied by traditional advertising in marketing campaigns, prior academic research has focused primarily on the distinct stand-alone effects of placements. In an experiment working with realistic audiovisual stimuli, the combined effects of product placements and TV spot advertising were examined. Three conditions involving the same target brand were created (placement-only, commercial-only, commercial-placement). Results revealed higher brand awareness for the placement-only and the placement-commercial condition compared to the commercial-only condition. It was also shown that exposure to a subsequent placement can enhance memory for the preceding commercial (backward encoding). However, exposure to a preceding commercial did not facilitate placement recall (forward encoding). Results also revealed that placements can strengthen brand images that were established by a preceding TV commercial (image activation). However, this effect was conditional on individuals’ persuasion knowledge. Implications of these findings for advertising campaigns are discussed.
Practitioner and Audience Attitudes toward Product Placement in Reality Television • Alex Walton, Cartoon Network; Barbara Miller, Elon University • As product placement continues to become a part of the television advertising landscape, television audiences are becoming more exposed to product placements and more aware of product placement as a persuasion tactic. Reality television, which represents a large percentage of the primetime television programming, provides an opportunity to present brand information in a context involving real events with real persona, perhaps limiting the activation of persuasion knowledge. Further, while including a brand name in a scripted show requires planning, capturing reality inevitably provides opportunities to place brand names into programming. This study examined product placements in reality television from multiple perspectives, including (1) in-depth interviews with network entertainment executives; and (2) a series of focus groups with audiences. The Persuasion Knowledge Model was applied as an analytic induction tool to analyze the findings for synthesis with existing literature. Implications for practitioners are discussed and a model of audience response to product placements and integrations is presented.
PKM: Changes in Millennials’ Experience with Media & Attitudes, Attention, and Coping Behaviors Regarding Advertisements Since 2004 • Jensen Moore-Copple, West Virginia University; Blair Dowler, West Virginia University; Kelley Crowley, West Virginia University • This study examines changing attitudes, attention, and avoidance of advertising as well as experience with different media for early (born between 1979 and 1987) vs. late (born between 1985 and 1993) millennials. The Persuasion Knowledge Model is used as a basis for understanding how audiences develop attitudes about persuasive attempts (e.g., advertising messages) and use this information to “”cope”" with future advertising interactions. This investigation extends work done by Speck & Elliot (1997) and Moore (2004) by comparing both traditional media (newspapers, magazines, radio, television) and the Internet. Using survey methodology, this research examines “”coping”" behaviors associated with exposure to today’s abundant advertising messages. Results suggest that between the five media, early vs. late millennials report very different attitudes toward advertising, attention to advertising, avoidance of advertising, and media usage. Implications for advertisers wishing to target millennials are discussed.
Direct-to-Consumer Antidepressant Advertising, Skepticism toward Advertising, and Consumers’ Optimistic Bias about the Future Risk of Depression • Jin Seong Park, University of Tennessee; Ilwoo Ju, University of Tennessee; kenneth eunhan kim, oklahoma state university • Although exposure to direct-to-consumer (DTC) advertising is reported to influence the public’s beliefs about diseases, no research has investigated how DTC advertising may affect the extent of consumers’ optimistic bias about the future risk of diseases. Based on a survey with members of an online consumer panel (N = 699), the current study revealed that: (a) consumers exhibited a tendency to believe they were at less risk of developing clinical depression in the future than their peers, demonstrating an optimistic bias; (b) exposure to DTC antidepressant advertising acted to reduce the extent of such bias, especially when consumers were less skeptical towards prescription drug advertising. When consumers were highly skeptical, DTC exposure did not significantly relate to the extent of optimistic bias; and (c) once formed, the extent of optimistic bias negatively related to consumers’ intention to seek information about depression. Implications of the research for the theory and practice of DTC advertising were discussed.
Can You Say What You Feel? A Matter of “”Wearin”" for (Musical) Codes in Advertising • Caroline Johnson; Carson Wagner, Ohio University • Research has shown that viewers may have more negative explicit attitudes toward brands using advertising codes perceived as “”worn out,”" the presence of the code led to more positive implicit attitudes. This suggests the possibility of detecting wearin—wherein viewers engage the codes—using implicit measures. While viewers may express more positive explicit attitudes toward a brand that has replaced the codes with new ones, implicit attitudes may be more negative in response to the new code.
Effects of Emotion and Interface Design on Mobile Advertising Effectiveness among Chinese College Students • wenjing xie, Southern Illinois University Carbondale; Yunze Zhao, Renmin University of China; Wenya Xie • This study examines the effect of emotional appeals and the interface design of mobile devices on people’s emotional reaction to attitude towards mobile ads as well as their purchase intention of the advertised products. A survey with 442 college students in Beijing shows that emotional appeal as a whole predicts all three dependent variables. Interface design factors of hand-held device, especially screen size, also predict attitude and purchase intention. Moreover, the ubiquitous feature, interface friendliness and advertisement size influence attention to mobile Internet ads. People’s emotional reaction to mobile ads can also predict their attitude and purchase behavior.
Young American Consumers’ Social Media Use, Online Privacy Concerns, Trust, Risk, and Support for Advertising Regulation • Hongwei Yang, Appalachian State University • A web survey study of 422 American college students was conducted in October, 2010 to test a conceptual model of consumers’ regulatory support for social media advertising, built upon previous studies. It shows that consumers’ prior negative experience of online disclosure significantly increased their online privacy concerns that in turn elevated their perceived risks and undermined their trust of online companies, marketers and laws. Consumers’ heightened risks built up their support for government regulation of social media advertising while their trust enhanced their support for industry self-regulation. Interestingly, young consumers’ trust and perceived risk of online disclosure did not negatively influence their time spent on social networking and blogging websites. Implications for digital interactive marketers, government and self-regulatory agencies are discussed.
Predicting Reactions to Sex in Advertising: The Interplay of Emotional Arousal, Ethical Judgment, and Sexual Self-Schema on Responses to Sexual Content • Kyunga Yoo, University of Georgia; Hojoon Choi, University of Georgia; Tom Reichert, University of Georgia; Michael S. LaTour, University of Nevada Las Vegas; John B. Ford, Old Dominion University • Employing a large national sample, the current research examined how consumer’s emotional arousal and ethical judgment mediate between their sexual ad perception and ad response processes. Simultaneously, the influence of Sexual Self-Schema (SSS) on this mediating mechanism was also assessed. Findings show that consumers experience a conflict between their emotional arousal and ethical morality on processing sexual content in advertising, and SSS plays an important role in manipulating the extent of this conflict.
Effects of Purchasing Experience and Repeated Exposure to the Website on Online Customers’ Brand Relationship • Doyle Yoon, University of Oklahoma • This study examines the effects of prior purchase experience, Internet efficacy, and repeated exposure on consumers’ relationship with retailers, using data collected from an online survey of 802 respondents (465 for a web-based e-retailer version and 337 for a click-and-mortar retailer version). Three relationship quality constructs – trust, satisfaction, and commitment  are higher in respondents with prior purchasing experience and higher Internet efficacy. However, decreasing trends are found in all three constructs over repeated exposure to the Website. Belyne’s (1970) Two-Factor Theory is used to explain the decrease of relationship quality over repeated exposure. More implications are discussed.
To Help You or To Serve Myself? Exploring the Two Psychological Tendencies that Motivate Online Influentials to Communicate • Jie Zhang, University of Evansville; Wei-Na Lee • This paper describes a study in the psychology of eMavenism, the consumer tendency to acquire general marketplace information from the Internet and become especially involved in electronic word-of-mouth communication. The purpose of the study was to investigate empirically the associations between eMavenism and two important psychological tendencies, altruism and status seeking. The findings support the notion that eMavenism is driven by both other-regarding concern and self-serving interest. Furthermore, the relationship between altruism and eMavenism was found to be negatively moderated by revealing true identity online. Revealing true identity online did not significantly impact the relationship between status seeking and eMavenism. These findings enrich the knowledge of the psychology of eMavenism, improve the concept of eMavenism, and suggest some motivations for engaging in eMavenism. Practically, advertising strategies can be fine-tuned to appeal more effectively to eMavens by satisfying their psychological tendencies.
Am I Really Doing It For Your Benefit? Exploring Social and Personal Motivations for Providing Positive versus Negative Electronic Word-of-Mouth • Jie Zhang, University of Evansville; Wei-Na Lee • This paper describes a study examining whether social and personal motivations affect presenting positive versus negative electronic word-of-mouth (eWOM) similarly or differently. Altruism, consumer self-confidence—social outcome decision making, and personal innovativeness for Web were selected to represent social, social-personal, and personal motivations for eWOM giving. The findings support that all three motivations are important driving forces for eWOM provision in general. In particular, the social-personal motivation, consumer self-confidence—social outcome decision making, was significantly more associated with positive than negative eWOM giving. Advertisers need to incorporate themes linked to this motivation in their campaigns in order to get more “”good”" word from consumers. Both altruism and personal innovativeness for Web affected providing pleasant versus unpleasant product information similarly. Advertisers need to monitor these two motivations when consumers form negative impressions concerning a product. The findings expand the knowledge of social and personal motivations for providing eWOM and improve the theoretical understanding of the relationship between motivations and the type of eWOM presented.
Risk, Realism, and Responsibility in Beer Commercials • Lara Zwarun • When exposed to beer commercials that creatively circumvent the spirit of self-regulatory advertising guidelines by juxtaposing drinking with risky physical activities, participants who drink alcohol perceived them as more realistic than non-drinkers did. The Message Information Processing (MIP) model is applied to illustrate how this perceived realism is part of logical mental processing that reinforces drinking beliefs and behaviors. Drinkers also found the commercials more responsible than non-drinkers, despite some participants believing they had seen people engaging in risky activities while under the influence. A commercial featuring designated driving was viewed as less realistic by drinkers; open-ended comments reveal this may be because in their experience, the use of designated drivers is rare.
Consumer Insights, Clients, and Capstone Campaigns Courses: Teaching Research in Advertising Curricula • Danielle Coombs, Kent State University • Evidence suggests that teaching research to undergraduate advertising students can be one of the most challenging roles an advertising faculty member will undertake. Unlike classes in copywriting, media planning, or account management, students often fail to see the connection between the course content and their eventual careers. This disconnect is exacerbated by fears and anxiety surrounding the topics of statistics (and its often equally disliked sibling, mathematics in general). Evidence indicates that some students chose advertising over marketing majors in part because of the reduced math requirements, and—for many—research classes are explicitly linked to these dreaded areas. Despite these challenges, research remains core component for most advertising curricula. This research is designed to understand how research currently is taught and the perceived value of teaching research in a contemporary advertising program, both in terms of individual, specific research-centered classes and as a component of strategy- or campaigns-driven courses. Within that context, we also explore how experiential learning (operationalized for our purposes as client-based projects) can be utilized to better support objectives associated with teaching research to undergraduate advertising students.
Is diversity “”non-existent”" or a “”non-issue?”": Preliminary results from a thematic analysis ascertaining how educators define diversity in advertising • Laurie Phillips • In the past four decades, diversity has been the subject of heated debate on Madison Avenue and within the halls of the academy alike. Within the ad industry, diversity has been the catalyst for lawsuits concerning employment discrimination, vitriol about monocultural representations within ad messaging, and frequent trade press coverage of America’s changing demographics. Building upon this information, this study reports on qualitative data from an on-going nationwide survey assessing educators’ attitudes toward teaching about diversity in advertising. Reviewing nearly 300 responses to the query “”how do you define diversity in advertising?”" from educators at both accredited and unaccredited institutions, the study includes feedback from those who are rarely surveyed: educators in ad programs housed both inside and outside of schools of journalism and mass communication.
Why Students Major in Advertising • Ron Taylor, University of Tennessee, Knoxville • A total of 145 essays written by students seeking admission to an advertising degree program at a major Southeastern university were examined for student motivation for pursuing an advertising major. All essays for three academic years, each five years apart, were selected to maximize the opportunity to find differences. The essays were submitted in the academic years 1997-98 (46 essays), 2002-03 (38 essays), and 2007-08 (61 essays). The opportunity to express one’s creativity ability is the primary reason students are attracted to advertising.
Professional Freedom & Responsibility (PF&R) Papers
Job Satisfaction Among Minority Advertising Professionals: An Update • Jami Fullerton, Oklahoma State University; Alice Kendrick, Southern Methodist University • This paper partially replicated and updated a study of job satisfaction among minority advertising graduates honored through a national program. In the current study, responses from alumni of the American Advertising Federation’s Most Promising Minority Students in Advertising from the years 2006-2010 were compared with results from a similar study of alumni from 1997-2005. In the current study, overall job satisfaction for those working in advertising was on the positive side of neutral but significantly lower than alumni who did not work in advertising. Minority advertising professionals were most satisfied with their co-workers and least satisfied with their compensation. Salary was positively correlated with job satisfaction, as was the presence of a professional mentor. Verbatim responses about employment challenges described a steep learning curve for recent graduates who joined the workforce. Implications for industry and academic programs are discussed.
Special Topics Papers
Dealing with Conflicting Health Messages: A Qualitative Study of College Students’ Understandings of Tanning and Skin Cancer Prevention Advertising Messages • Ho-Young (Anthony) Ahn, U of Tennessee; Stephanie Kelly, University of Tennessee; Lei Wu, University of Tennessee; Eric Haley, U of Tennessee • The aim of the current study was to explore how college students make sense of conflicting health messages in relation to tanning in an advertising context. In-depth interviews with 30 college students revealed a certain degree of conflict between advertising message claims, their beliefs and feelings toward the messages. Self-resolution strategies such as problem-solving, compromising and avoiding emerged. Suggestions and implications for health promotion practitioners were provided in terms of advertising skepticism, advertising moderation, credible message sources in advertising and a gap between attitude and behavior.
Maximizing Optimization: A Small Business Owner Confronts SEM (A Case Study In Search Engine Marketing) • Martine Beachboard, Idaho State University • A New England auto mechanic launches an online specialty auto parts shop and considers how best to market it: through pay-per-click advertising, search engine optimization, or a combination. He seeks advice from a professional web consulting firm and examines their proposal for three levels of analysis and support. This teaching case offers a relevant and detailed example to supplement textbook coverage of search engine marketing. It is designed to promote class discussion and critical problem solving.
Connecting Virtual World Perception to Real World Consumption: Chinese Female White-Collar Professionals’ Interpretation of Product Placement in SNSs • Huan Chen; Eric Haley, U of Tennessee • A phenomenology study reveals the lived meanings of product placement in social network sites (SNSs) among Chinese female white-collar professional users through an investigation of a newly launched SNS, Happy Network. In total, 15 face-to-face, in-depth interviews were conducted to collect data. Findings indicated that participants’ interpretations of product placement were interrelated with the socially constructed meanings of the SNS, participants’ social role of white-collar professionals, and consumer culture of contemporary Chinese society. In particular, the socially constructed meanings of product placement in the context of SNS are jutisfying the existence, connecting to the real world, noticing the familiar, insinuating brand image, and linking to consumption.
“The Other Hangover”": A Case Study in Implementing and Evaluating an Anti-Binge Drinking Advertising Campaign • Nathan Gilkerson, University of Minnesota – Twin Cities; Michelle Gross; Andrea Ahneman • The Other Hangover is an award-winning anti-binge drinking advertising campaign created by students and launched on the University of Minnesota campus in the fall of 2010. Undergraduates led development and implementation of the campaign, and multiple surveys were designed to evaluate the impact and success of the project. Following an overview of the research and creative strategy behind the campaign, a summary of the evaluation results — including both quantitative and qualitative data — is presented.
Exploring the Effects of External Brand Placement on Game Players’ Processing of In-Game Brand • Eunice Kim, The University of Texas at Austin; Matthew Eastin, The University of Texas at Austin • There are many branded game-related products, which we call as external brands. This study explores the effects of external brand experience during game play on players’ processing of in-game brand. Results reveal that the in-game brand is better recalled by players experiencing an identical external brand to the in-game brand than players experiencing no external brand or a competing brand. Brand memory was greater for the competing external brand than the in-game brand.
The Cat Herder: The Role and Function of the Agency Creative Director • Karen Mallia, University of South Carolina; Kasey Windels, DePaul University; Sheri Broyles, University of North Texas • While creativity is the lifeblood of the advertising agency, little is known about the role of the creative director in guiding the creative process. This exploratory research aims to uncover the role of the creative director as perceived by agency creatives. Utilizing quasi-ethnographic methods, this research is based on data from six agencies. Findings suggest successful creative directors are transformational leaders with many roles, including brand steward, culture builder, and champion of creative teams.
Channeling the Spirit of IMC: Analysis of the Context and Conditions that Underscore Integrated Marketing Communication • Brian Smith • Integrated marketing communication (IMC) has been discussed as both a process and a concept. On the one hand it is mechanical, through message and image matching, channel management, and measurement. On the other hand, it is also conceptual, based on a unique organizing philosophy that underscores communication mechanics. The latter, which can be termed “”the spirit”" of integration, has received little attention in the literature in spite of its influence on communication. This study outlines the organizational variables that underscore integration, including informal processes and social interactions, which facilitate the mechanics of integration. Results provide theoretical insight and progress integrated communication theory beyond the current emphasis on mechanics to co-creational and socially-constructed considerations in communication integration.
Extending TPB and TAM to Mobile Viral Marketing: A Cross-cultural Study of Young American and Chinese Consumers’ Attitude, Intent and Behavior • Hongwei Yang, Appalachian State University; Liuning Zhou, Center for the Digital Future, Annenberg School for Communication, University of Southern California • A web survey of 440 American college students was conducted in April, 2010 and a paper survey of 835 Chinese college students was administered in May, June and October, 2010 to validate the Theory of Planned Behavior and the Technology Acceptance Model in predicting young American and Chinese young consumers’ mobile viral marketing attitude, intention and behavior. Structural model testing results confirmed the chain of mobile viral marketing attitude to intent to actual behavior. Subjective norm, behavioral control, perceived utility, and perceived cost predicted their attitude toward viral marketing. Their attitude and perceived utility predicted their viral marketing intent while their intent and attitude predicted the actual behavior. The implications for the industry and academia were discussed.
Advertising Images of Gender and Race Portrayed in Sports Illustrated Kids, 2000-2009 • Ashley Furrow, Ohio University • Gender and racial discrimination in sport remains rampant, and sports media continue as a leading arena for the reproduction of dominant, traditional images of gender and race and of inequality between the sexes and races (Sage, 1990; Smith, 2007). This study conducted a content analysis of advertising images (N=1,490) in Sports Illustrated Kids to determine whether these visual images reflect actual participation rates in athletic competition based on gender and race and whether the number of images of women in the magazine has increased during the magazine’s second decade of publication, 2000 to 2009. This study found that women and racial minorities continue to be vastly underrepresented within the magazine’s advertising pages. Photographs featuring men were found to vastly outnumber those featuring women in SIK advertising photographs by a ratio of nearly 4 to 1 (79.7% to 20.3%). As far as a racial difference, African, Asian, and Hispanic models are still fighting for representation in the magazine with only 27.8% depicted in advertising images.
Examining the Influences of Online Comments on Viewers’ Perceptions of Corporate Advertising on YouTube • Jiran Hou, The University of Georgia; Hojoon Choi, University of Georgia • This study examines the impact of the co-appearance of online peer comments and corporate advertising on online viewers’ attitudes toward the ad, claim believability and attitudes toward the brand. The findings show that the impacts of online peer comments on ad processing and attitudes varied depending on the comment valences and individuals’ previous attitude toward the brand. Negative comments were more influential than positive comments in affecting viewers’ claim believability, attitude toward the ad and attitude toward the brand. Viewers with negative prior brand attitudes were hardly influenced by any types of peer comments, and viewers with positive prior brand attitudes were more easily influenced by negative comments.
The influence of fear appeal on persuasion effects for skin cancer public service announcements (PSAs) according to fear message framing and fear type • Hannah Kang, University of Florida • This study examined the impact of fear message framing and fear type in fear appeal on the persuasion effect of skin cancer public service announcement (PSA). To examine persuasion effects, this study used attitude toward advertising, attitude toward using tanning beds and sunbathing, and behavioral intention as the dependent variable. The experiment was designed by a 2 (message framing: positive message/negative message) X 2 (fear type: health risk/ social risk) factorial design between-subjects experimental design. Results indicated that the main effect of fear type was found on the attitude toward advertising. Moreover, there was significant interaction between fear message framing and fear type not only on the attitude toward using tanning beds or sunbathing, but also on behavioral intention. Implications and limitations of the findings were discussed.
Goal Theories and Attention to Online Banner Advertisements • Dae-Hee Kim, University of Florida • Drawing upon several findings from goal theories in cognitive psychology, the present study investigates a potential mechanism about how consumers process online banner advertising. Two online experiments with simulated web pages revealed that consumer’s goals could determine the attention to online banner advertising. More specifically, the first study showed that subjects paid more attention to the banner stimuli that was relevant to their primed goal. In the second study, subjects attended more to banner advertising on the webpage where they completed the goal-directed tasks rather than on a webpage where their tasks were ongoing. Implications and directions for future research are extensively discussed.
Boys will be Boys: An Analysis of the Male Image in Advertising over the Past 60 Years • Katherine Krauss, Manhattan College • This paper examines conceptions of masculinity, commercialization of personal hygiene, and the formation of the American male identity in order to create a general foundation of understanding as to why masculinity is perceived in the way that it is and why advertisers sell the way that they do to men. Focusing on the advertising efforts of Proctor & Gamble’s beauty and grooming product, Old Spice, this paper analyzes the commonalities and differences of theme and content in advertisements of the 1950s and 2000s. This paper discusses the advertised messages being conveyed to the 18- to 36-year old age demographic in both decades, where each ad is examined for the cultural values it represents and markets to men. Using a textural analysis approach, each advertisement is examined in its wording and image to highlight the representation of hegemonic ideals, namely, sex, pleasure-seeking, and reputation. This in-depth analysis of the Old Spice campaigns allows this paper to identify that the image of the young macho-man lifestyle has been strongly static throughout American history, mirroring and perpetuating the hegemonic male ideal.
The influence of relevance and emotional appeals in public service ads on attitudes and behavioral intentions toward global climate change • Supathida Kulpavaropas • This study examines the main and interactive effects of two emotional appeals (happy and fear) in public service advertisements and the degree to which this topic is assessed as relevant on people’s attitudes and behavioral intention toward global climate change. The results of an experiment showed that participants with high issue relevance reported more positive attitude toward global climate change and more positive behavioral intention when they viewed an ad with a happy vs. fearful appeal.
Effects of Message Involvement and the Tone of Reviews on Facebook:Perceived Credibility, Attitude toward the Ad and Brand • Jinhyon Kwon, University of Florida; Ji Young Kim • This study examines how the Facebook brand page environment, where advertisements and consumer reviews coexist, affects consumers’ attitudes toward the advertisement and the brand. A 2 x 3 experiment manipulated the level of ad message involvement and the tone of online reviews. Results suggest that the tone of online reviews affects consumers’ perceptions of review credibility. Furthermore, an ad message involvement and the review tone interaction emerged for attitude toward the brand.
Effects of Fair Trade Label, Consumers’ Social Responsibility, and Message Framing on Attitudes and Behavior • Seul Lee • This study explored the effectiveness of a Fair Trade certified label, differences of personal social responsibility, and the message framing through an online experiment. The findings indicated that more socially concerned group manifested more positive attitudes and purchase intention than less socially concerned group and that gain-framed messages had a more positive impact than did loss-framed messages. However, this study failed to present that a Fair Trade certified label generated more positive impact.
Effectiveness of blog advertising: Impact of message sidedness, communicator expertise, and advertising intent • Hyun-Ji Lim; Jin Sook Im; Yoo Jin Chung, University of Florida • This study attempts to examine how three factors — message sidedness, communicator expertise, and advertising intent of blog messages — can affect the perception of the message recipients regarding the credibility of the message, improve their attitudes toward the product or the brand reviewed, and provoke changes in their intended behavior. A 2 x 2 x 2 factorial experiment was designed. The experiment involved stimulus material in the form of a blog post, which was modified according to the treatment factors of message sidedness (one-sided vs. refutational two-sided), communicator expertise (high vs. low), and advertising intent (explicit vs. implicit). 388 data sets were collected. This study concluded that a one-sided message was found to be more effective than a refutational two-sided message for blog advertising. Communicator expertise is an important factor while advertising intent was not. This study suggested additional findings related to gender difference.
What Path, Advertising Framing? Tracing the Travels of Framing Through the Advertising Journals, 1996-2010. • Carmen Maye, University of South Carolina • Frame analysis in advertising journals is examined between 1996 and 2010. Included are Advertising & Society Review, International Journal of Advertising, Journal of Advertising, Journal of Advertising Research, Journal of Current Issues & Research in Advertising and Journal of Interactive Advertising. Frame analysis appears to be gaining traction in the advertising literature. That advertising journals have more slowly embraced framing research than their communications counterparts may owe to inherent differences between news content and advertising.
From Unspeakable to Homosexual to Gay to LGBT: The Evolution of Research on Marketing’s Most Controversial Market Segment • Laurie Phillips • For nearly two decades, collectively the trade press, LGBT marketing firms, tremendous ad expenditure growth in LGBT publications, the explosion of LGBT-targeted, ad-supported media outlets, and strong buying power figures have justified the existence of an LGBT market. Through an in-depth literature review of over 75 five pieces of peer-reviewed advertising and marketing scholarship, this study addresses how scholars have studied the market. In addition to providing one of the most extensive literature reviews on the topic to date, this study provides researchers with a roadmap for future research.
The Effects of Using “”Real Women”" In Advertising • Amber Remke, Oklahoma State University • Are advertisements that use more realistic models as effective as those that use “”ideal”" models? This study seeks to answer that question using an experimental design to determine whether there is a difference in how females will respond to ads featuring an “”ideal”" model or a more realistic model and whether body-esteem or self-esteem are moderating variables. Results show that regardless of high or low body- or self-esteem, the women surveyed preferred the ad featuring the more realistic model. This study has important implications for providing a greater understanding of how media affects self-image, as well as the implications of these unrealistic standards and how they impact a consumer’s attitudes toward advertising. This study also has important implications for American women with an unrealistic image of true beauty. If advertisements focused on portraying more realistic models, American females’ perception of beauty could possibly shift away from an unattainable ideal to a more realistic vision of beauty.
Trappist or Tropist? The Monastic Brewing Heritage and Its Effect on Perceptions of Product Authenticity and Intentions to Purchase • Susan Sarapin, Purdue University; Christine Spinetta, Purdue University • This study explored perceived authenticity of a beer brewed by monks in a monastery and four inauthentic beers, measured on respondents’ awareness of the “”real”" beer’s heritage, and what influence that knowledge has on intentions to buy it. The heritage narrative had a significant effect on authenticity ratings and purchase intentions. Respondents’ religious preferences had no effect on the dependent variable. The study has implications for the marketing of Trappist and inauthentic, abbey-style beers.
Signaling Theory and Its Role in Branding University Contract Training Programs • Shelley Stephens, University of South Alabama • Academic outreach divisions (AOD) within institutions provide open enrollment and contract training. Often surrounding businesses are unaware of this resource, despite holding the institution’s name in high regard through association sets and frequency. The unawareness creates information asymmetry for AODs according to the Signaling Theory. Larger association sets and frequency of encounters with the institution’s brand name deepens implicit memory encoding. This quantitative study found that feelings for the institution transfers to other divisions AODs are cobranded.
Verbal Claims and Graphical Features on Toddler Food Packaging: Advertising “”Healthy”" Products • Chan Le Thai, University of California, Santa Barbara • Advertising features, verbal and graphic, on food packages and labels can convey a wealth of information to consumers, including whether the product is healthy. A content analysis was conducted to investigate how often certain health-implying front-of-package features appear on packages of toddler snack foods. Five undergraduate coders coded 68 products for health claims, nutrient claims, ingredient claims, and graphics. Ingredient claims and graphics of potential ingredients were identified and cross-referenced with the ingredient list on the back of the package. The data revealed that almost all of the packages used the coded features: 82% of the sample featured nutrient claims; 52% featured health claims; 97% included graphical depictions and 66% of those graphics were possible ingredients in the product; and 86% featured ingredient claims. Of all the products that contained an ingredient claim or graphics of a potential ingredient, the ingredient used in the claim or graphical feature was present in the ingredient list, but the ingredient was rarely the first ingredient on the list and was often in a non-conventional form, such as a puree, a powder, flavor, or color. The findings from this study provide a foundation of knowledge that may guide future research and policies related to package advertising and labeling.
Use of Culturally Meaningful Symbols or Iconographies in Gay-Themed Ads • Nam-Hyun Um • This study examines the characteristics of gay-themed ads, focusing on culturally meaningful symbols and iconographies, in gay magazines (specifically The Advocate, Out, and Curve). In recent years, advertising scholars and practitioners have grown more interested in how gay-themed ads influence gay consumers and non-gay consumers. In gay-themed ads, advertisers employ culturally meaningful symbols or iconographies as part of an effort to not alienate non-gay consumers. Gay-themed advertising, however, has yet to be deeply analyzed in terms of creativity or consumer reactions. Hence, Study 1 examines the characteristics of gay-themed ads using content analysis of gay-targeted magazines (The Advocate, Out, and Curve). As a follow up study, Study 2 assesses consumers’ responses to gay-themed ads. The study, using implicit and explicit gay-themed ads, gathers reactions from straight and gay participants. We go on to clarify the findings’ implications, discuss some concerns raised over gay-themed ads, and suggest directions for future research.
What should I eat today? An exploration of how college-aged females use different media platforms to influence food decisions • Mari Luz Zapata Ramos, University of Florida • This study sought to assess if and how college-aged females use smart phones and other informational sources to make or influence food related decisions. A survey administered to 365 female college students revealed that respondents use smart phones to influence food decisions. Four focus groups were conducted using survey participants with the required characteristics. Dominant reasons for using a range of informational sources to influence food decisions were identified.