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“Public E-pinion”Digital Media’s Impact on Public Opinion               Formation     Mark Hannah, Edelman  SNCR’s NewComm...
Yours Truly 
The Agenda 
Beyond Evangelism & Apocalypse     Democratizing          Imposing a     information            “digital divide”     Makin...
Impact Evident
In America, there cannotbe enough of knowledge,for all knowledge benefitsboth those who possess itand those who do not.   ...
The Internet Increases…                                    ing‐        Political Knowledge   Read sive                    ...
But What of Civic         Engagement?“Respondents who say they rely primarilyon the Internet for news are less likelythan ...
Cui Bono?
I’d argue …  Online         Offline  Political      PoliticalEngagement     Engagement
“Public sentiment is  everything. With publicsentiment, nothing can fail.  Without it, nothing can        succeed.”       ...
MediaFragmentation  Selective  Consumption    Cognitive    Reinforcement      Group Polarization
The Response – Part 1 –  “If people want to confirm own prejudices, they’re better    able to do that than they were before...
The Response – Part 2 –  “New media has better built in accountability measures.  The    wisdom of crowds phenomenon is a ...
Mark Hannah    Edelman, public affairs mark.hannah@edelman.com       212‐704‐4514 (office)                        
Public E-pinion
Public E-pinion
Public E-pinion
Public E-pinion
Public E-pinion
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Public E-pinion

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Presented by Mark Hannah, 2008 SNCR Fellow

NewComm Forum 2008

Published in: News & Politics, Technology
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Transcript of "Public E-pinion"

  1. 1. “Public E-pinion”Digital Media’s Impact on Public Opinion Formation Mark Hannah, Edelman SNCR’s NewComm Forum 2008
  2. 2. Yours Truly 
  3. 3. The Agenda 
  4. 4. Beyond Evangelism & Apocalypse  Democratizing  Imposing a  information  “digital divide”  Making our kids  Making our kids  smart  dumb   Improving well‐ being by increasing  Vitamin D  access to health  deficiency  information 
  5. 5. Impact Evident
  6. 6. In America, there cannotbe enough of knowledge,for all knowledge benefitsboth those who possess itand those who do not. - Alexis de Tocqueville, Democracy in America
  7. 7. The Internet Increases… ing‐ Political Knowledge Read sive  n inte Political Discourse Political Interest
  8. 8. But What of Civic Engagement?“Respondents who say they rely primarilyon the Internet for news are less likelythan other Americans to volunteer, tospend time with friends, to trust oneanother.” - Robert Putnam, Bowling Alone (2000)
  9. 9. Cui Bono?
  10. 10. I’d argue … Online Offline Political PoliticalEngagement Engagement
  11. 11. “Public sentiment is everything. With publicsentiment, nothing can fail. Without it, nothing can succeed.” – A. Lincoln
  12. 12. MediaFragmentation Selective Consumption Cognitive Reinforcement Group Polarization
  13. 13. The Response – Part 1 –  “If people want to confirm own prejudices, they’re better  able to do that than they were before.. but the upsides [of  the blogosphere] definitely outweigh that. ” –  “There are a lot more sources of information than there  ever were before…If you’re really interested in substance,  there are more places to go now.  If you’re interested in  horserace coverage, there are plenty of places you can go  too.” –  “This is a self‐organizing medium where high quality  content will filter out away from garbage.  It’s better to  have a huge market deciding what’s good or useful and  not some executives sitting in an office in Manhattan.”  –  “Objectivity was always something of an illusion.   MSM  will still swear they’re objective.  But there seems to be  more ‘topping off’ by reporters because they go on these  pundit shows  ‐ and the Internet is part of this… everyone  is a pundit now.  Newsweek and Washington Post  reporters will go on Keith Olbermann and play ball with  him.  So this exposes the point of view of reporters.” 
  14. 14. The Response – Part 2 –  “New media has better built in accountability measures.  The  wisdom of crowds phenomenon is a built in advantage ‐ because  you have a larger sample size ... why is reporter good at picking  representative voters?  Isn’t better to have a blog on politics where  a hundred people sound off?  When reporters ‘crowd source’ blog  comments, it forces them to be more transparent.” –  “I’m concerned  that it appears we are heading toward a video‐ centric web [where broadband yields web‐integrated television]....  that kids might grow up looking at the Internet as just another  video portal and that the current interactivity of the web may  wane.” –  [Regarding youth and civic engagement ]:  “Young people don’t  feel like they have to convince elites that they have a say.  It’s part  of the backtalk that’s come to be expected, and part of the reason  MSM is so beleaguered…  Some things merit a lot more accredited  or elite opinion, but not politics or civic discourse.” 
  15. 15. Mark Hannah   Edelman, public affairs mark.hannah@edelman.com   212‐704‐4514 (office)   

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