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  1. 1. Chapter Twelve Mass Media American Government and Politics: Deliberation, Democracy, and Citizenship
  2. 2. Chapter Twelve: Learning Objectives • Identify the major news media and describe how they have changed over time • Explain various ways in which the media affect politics
  3. 3. Chapter Twelve: Learning Objectives • Discuss strengths and weaknesses of the American news media • Analyze ways in which government regulates and influences the news media
  4. 4. Chapter Twelve: Learning Objectives • Understand how public figures seek to shape news coverage • Appraise ways in which the media foster deliberation and citizenship
  5. 5. Introduction What are the differences between the mass media and the news media? What pressures do journalists face when deciding what news stories to cover?
  6. 6. A Brief History How has the mass media changed over time? Evan Vucci/AP Photo
  7. 7. A Brief History: The Era of Ink Newspapers had close ties to political parties in the early days of the nation. After the Civil War, newspaper circulation increased and many newspapers emphasized the practice of yellow journalism.
  8. 8. A Brief History: The Era of Ink By the late 1800s, newspapers became a source of information for scholarship and public deliberation. In the early 20th century, investigative reporters were writing about corruption in government and were called muckrakers.
  9. 9. A Brief History: The Era of Sight and Sound After WWI, broadcasting networks began to form. During the 1930s and 1940s, radio was a popular method to deliver news. By the mid-20th century, television began to emerge as a news source.
  10. 10. A Brief History: The Era of Sight and Sound Two features of broadcast media that pose problems for news broadcasters 1. Public ownership of the airwaves 2. Broadcast television networks primarily in the entertainment business
  11. 11. A Brief History: The Era of Cable and Conglomerates By the 1970s, cable television was available to many Americans. Talk radio also emerged as a new medium of deliberation and debate. Newspaper chains and media conglomerates emerged.
  12. 12. A Brief History: The Era of Cable and Conglomerates Source: Project for Excellence in Journalism, STATE OF THE NEWS MEDIA 2009 at http://
  13. 13. A Brief History: The Era of Cable and Conglomerates Source: Project for Excellence in Journalism, STATE OF THE NEWS MEDIA 2009 at http://
  14. 14. A Brief History: The Era of the Internet In the early years of the Internet, there was a one-way flow of information but that has changed with the emergence of blogs. How may blogs contribute to deliberative democracy?
  15. 15. Media Impact What role does the media play in the political process? How does the media contribute to deliberation?
  16. 16. Media Impact: Informing Research has shown that Americans are not well-informed about politics. Is that the media’s fault? What are some reasons why Americans may not be well-informed about politics?
  17. 17. Media Impact: Agenda Setting, Priming and Framing Through agenda setting the media influences what issues will be up for public deliberation. Priming is when the media stresses certain issues and people use those issues as a basis for political judgment.
  18. 18. Media Impact: Agenda Setting, Priming and Framing Framing is the way the media defines an issue by either emphasizing or deemphasizing certain aspects of that issue. When the news media covers elections, they often participate in horse race journalism.
  19. 19. Media Impact: Direct Involvement Media owners have used their organizations to promote causes. One common way to do this is through editorials. Journalists do try to stay out of politics so as to maintain objectivity.
  20. 20. Professionalism, Accuracy, and Bias Do you believe the media is fair and accurate in portraying current events? What types of standards should the media be held to when reporting information?
  21. 21. Professionalism, Accuracy, and Bias: The Standards of the Profession Journalists often face dangers in doing their jobs. People continue to enter journalism school because they see it as an opportunity to make a difference and serve society as journalists may be watchdogs against corruption.
  22. 22. Professionalism, Accuracy, and Bias: Mistakes Flaws do occur in news coverage, especially as journalists are competing to be the first to break a news story. With the emergence of 24-hour cable news networks and the Internet, journalists are facing more pressure.
  23. 23. Pledges and Promises Journalism standards The Society of Professional Journalists has developed an ethics code. What types of standards do you believe journalists should follow?
  24. 24. Professionalism, Accuracy, and Bias: Dishonesty While news organizations strive for honesty, there are sometimes lapses and false stories make it to the public. Reporting false stories may lead to the loss of jobs for journalists and loss of credibility for news organizations.
  25. 25. Professionalism, Accuracy, and Bias: The Depths and the Shallows Many Americans have recently criticized the media for cutting back on the scope of coverage or the lack of coverage of complex issues. Do you believe the media does an effective job covering political events and information?
  26. 26. Professionalism, Accuracy, and Bias: Ideological Bias in the News Do you believe there is an ideological bias in the news? If so, is that bias liberal or conservative? How may media bias affect deliberation?
  27. 27. Professionalism, Accuracy, and Bias: Ideological Bias in the News Source: surveys of 673 journalists, March 7–May 2, 2005 and 1,500 adults March 3–April 5, 2005, Annenberg Public Policy Center, “Public and Press Differ About Partisan Bias, Accuracy and Press Freedom, New Annenberg Public Policy Center Survey Shows,” May 24, 2005, at www Summer2005/Partisan_Bias_20050524.pdf, accessed April 12, 2009.
  28. 28. Myths and Misinformation Journalism in the movies How has journalism been portrayed in the movies? Has that portrayal been accurate?
  29. 29. Government and Media How has government curbed or protected political expression in the media? Mark Wilson/Getty Images
  30. 30. International Perspectives Freedom of the press As compared to other liberal democracies, the United States is more likely to protect free speech. Why do you believe that is so?
  31. 31. Government and Media: Press Freedom, the Law, and the Courts Congress passed a Sedition Act in 1918, but repealed it in 1921. Two important court cases • Gitlow v. New York (1925) • New York Times Co. v. U.S. (1971)
  32. 32. Government and Media: Control of the Broadcast Media The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) was created in 1934 to regulate broadcast media. The federal government limits ownership of broadcast media.
  33. 33. Government and Media: Balance In order to ensure balance and access to media, the equal time rule and the fairness doctrine were put into place by the FCC. The fairness doctrine was repealed in 1987.
  34. 34. Government and Media: Government Information The government relies on the media to deliver information to citizens, but we must be aware of how much influence the government has over the media. During the war with Iraq, the Defense Department has allowed embedded reporters with the troops.
  35. 35. Influencing the Media: Media Leaders A few news organizations influence the rest of the news organizations through wire services. Where do you believe journalists get their ideas for stories? Do you believe that journalists and news organizations have influence over other journalists?
  36. 36. Influencing the Media: Pictures, Attacks, Mistakes, and Spin Newsmakers try to influence news coverage through spin. Tools for spinning include • News conferences and news releases • Talking points • Leaking stories
  37. 37. Mass Media and Deliberative Democracy: What are potential remedies for restoring public deliberation in the media? • Civic journalism • Self-criticism • Differentiating between amateurs and professionals
  38. 38. Deliberation, Citizenship, and You Forms of citizen journalism include • Contributing materials to professional media • Community funded journalism • Television stations recruiting college students to be citizen journalists
  39. 39. Summary • News media influences knowledge • Critics concerned about corporate control of media • Media may show political bias • Media help set political agenda