Changing Minds or Changing Channels? Partisan News in an Age of Choice

ISBN-10: 022604730X

ISBN-13: 9780226047300

Edition: 2013

Authors: Kevin Arceneaux, Martin Johnson

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Description:

We live in an age of media saturation, where with a few clicks of the remote—or mouse—we can tune in to programming where the facts fit our ideological predispositions. But what are the political consequences of this vast landscape of media choice? Partisan news has been roundly castigated for reinforcing prior beliefs and contributing to the highly polarized political environment we have today, but there is little evidence to support this claim, and much of what we know about the impact of news media come from studies that were conducted at a time when viewers chose from among six channels rather than scores.Through a series of innovative experiments, Kevin Arceneaux and Martin Johnson show that such criticism is unfounded. Americans who watch cable news are already polarized, and their exposure to partisan programming of their choice does not significantly change their initial position. In fact, the opposite is true: viewers become more polarized when forced to watch programming that opposes their beliefs. A much more troubling consequence of the ever-expanding media environment, the authors show, is that it has allowed people to tune out the news: the four top-rated partisan news programs draw a mere three percent of the total number of people watching television.Overturning much of the conventional wisdom, Changing Minds or Changing Channels? demonstrate that the strong effects of media exposure found in past research are simply not applicable in today’s more saturated media landscape.
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Book details

List price: $29.00
Copyright year: 2013
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
Publication date: 8/27/2013
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 224
Size: 6.00" wide x 9.00" long x 0.50" tall
Weight: 0.990
Language: English

Kevin Arceneaux is associate professor of political science and an affiliate of the Institute for Public Affairs at Temple University.�

Acknowledgments
The Expansion of Choice
Changes in Media Technology and Content
Selective Exposure and Media Effects
Partisan News and Mass Polarization
Hearing the Other Side and Standing Firm
The Salience and Framing of Issues
Bias and Incivility in Partisan Media
Media Effects in the Age of Choice
Appendices
Notes
References
Index
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