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					     What is the role of the media in
             policy process?
•   Watchdog
•   Educator
•   Instrument of policy entrepreneurs?
•   Entertainment?
 Changing Role of American News
• Political Mouth Peace
  – Partisan funded papers
• Financial Independence
  – Expansion of the suffrage & literacy rates leads
    to the penny press and financial independence
    from political parties.
• Objective Journalism
  – Journalism becomes thought of as a profession
    with professional standards and ethics.
• Broadcasting
   –   Politicians could speak directly to public
   –   TV expands the demand for news. (1963 CBS/NBC)
   –   Cable TV brings “round the clock” coverage
   –   How/why does culture change?

• Investigatory Journalism
   – Don’t just convey the news, investigate it.

• Media Conglomeration (5 corporations own over
  50% of circulation and revenue of newspapers,
  magazines, TV, radio, books, and movies)
 The Influence of the Media on the
• Average American watches 4.5 hours of TV
• Agenda Setting – attention to certain issues
  (or lack of attention)
• Advertising!!!!!
• Affects our taste in News? Sensationalism,
  Personality, & Image (over policy, politics,
  and substance)
• Or are they simply giving us what we want
Pew 2007 Poll
      Chermak and Weiss Article
• Did the media influence federal gun control

  – Opening a ‘window of opportunity
  – Influencing the range of policy alternatives
  – Promoting the interests of policy entrepreneurs
      Chermak and Weiss Article
• The Brady Bill and the ‘waiting period’
• Assault Weapons Ban

• Event driven
• Opens windows of opportunities (keep open)
• Focus on specific policy alternatives
 Do the elite control the media?
• Agenda Setting
  – Selection of topics
  – Distribution of Concerns

• Framing
  – Emphasis
  – Filter information
  – Bounding of debate
    Agenda Setting/Selection of Topics

•   Strategic selection
•   Selection of convenience
•   Subconscious selections
•   Random selection
•   Market factors: supply and demand
     – Give us what we want
Several years after 9/11, 69 % of Americans to believe
  that Saddam Hussein had a role in the attacks (62 %
  of Democrats, 80 % of Republicans and 67 % of

"The battle of Iraq is one victory in a war on terror
  that began on September the 11, 2001 -- and still
  goes on. That terrible morning, 19 evil men -- the
  shock troops of a hateful ideology -- gave America
  and the civilized world a glimpse of their
    Factors Limiting the Influence of
•   Socialization
•   Selectivity
•   Competition (limited)
•   Internet?
        Is the Media Biased?
• Liberal Bias (31% of Newspaper editors are
  democrats;14% Republican – 1996 survey)
• Conservative Bias (Corporate Ownership)
• Government Bias (relies on government for
  information & Licenses)
• Capitalist bias (sell products)
What should we do about the media?

•   Nothing
•   Increase competition
•   Regulate content
•   Deregulation
      Regulation of the Media
• Broadcast licenses renewed every three
  years if the station meets the "public
  interest, convenience, or necessity." about
  99.9% are renewed
• Ownership restrictions
  – No one cable company could own more than
    30% of the market (rule struck down)
• Government Censorship
   (de)Regulation of the Media
• Fairness doctrine (repealed in 1987)
• Equal Time provision (repealed in 1983)
• New FCC Rules on ownership restrictions
  – Cross-ownership: F.C.C.’s decision in 2007 to
    relax its ban on cross ownership of a daily
    newspaper and a television station in the same
    market (under appeal)
• Since 1996 TCA # of stations have
  increased but # of owners have decreased

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