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Communications: Agenda Setting

by: AmberNicole

Communications: Agenda Setting COMM 1001

Marketplace > East Carolina University > Communication > COMM 1001 > Communications Agenda Setting

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About this Document

These notes are what was covered in class. (power points not provided on blackboard.) Hope this helps. Feel free to reach out to me with any comments or questions. -Amber :)
Intro to Communications
Dr. Richards
Class Notes
communication, Communications, Comm, agenda, setting, agenda-setting, agenda-setting hypothesis, mass, Media, Mass Media, media agenda, public agenda, Public, cause-and-effect, framing, behavior, behavioral effect, gate-keepers, critique
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This 3 page Class Notes was uploaded by AmberNicole on Wednesday April 6, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to COMM 1001 at East Carolina University taught by Dr. Richards in Spring 2016. Since its upload, it has received 20 views. For similar materials see Intro to Communications in Communication at East Carolina University.


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Date Created: 04/06/16
Chapter 30 Agenda-Setting What not to think, but what to think about  Agenda-setting hypothesis o Mass media have ability to make the issues on their news agenda turn into the public agenda  Do not make deliberate attempt to influence opinions  Look to news professionals for cues on where to focus attention  What is important in the world? I look to John Oliver and he tells me Agenda-Setting Hypothesis  Predicts cause-and-effect relationship between media content and voter perception o Media tell voters which topics are most important o How might they do this? Media Agenda and Public Agenda: A Close Match  McCombs and Shaw’s first task was to measure the media agenda o Media agenda  Pattern of news coverage across major print and broadcast media, as measured by prominence and length of stories o Public agenda  Most important public issues as measured by public opinion surveys. What Causes what?  Yale researchers establishes cause-and-effect chain of influence from media agenda to public agenda o Viewers who saw media agendas that focused on pollution and defense elevated those issues on their own lists of concerns o Supported cause-and-effect relationship between media agenda and the public agenda Who is Most Affected by the Media Agenda?  McCombs and Shaw understood that people are not going to be programmed by the news media o People willing to let media shape thinking when they have a strong desire for more information  High need for cognition Framing: Transferring the Salience of Attributes  The media aren’t very successful in telling us what to think, but they are successful in telling us what to think about o Framing – selection of a number of related attributed for inclusion on the media agenda when a particular issue is discussed  They decide how to “frame” a story, which parts to highlights and which ones to ignore. (What they put in the story and what they leave out) Not just what to think about, but how to think about it  Framing is not just an option o Reporters inevitably frame a story by the personal attributes of public figures they select to describe o A typical example is deciding who a terrorist is o Two teammates talking about cheating and other man sends out videos: 3 perspectives- 1) whoever sent the video is a terrible person 2)the guy that is cheating is a terrible person 3)sympathy for the wife Beyond Opinion-The Behavioral Effect of the Media’s Agenda  The behavioral effect of media agenda is very apparent in professional sports o Television dramatically raised salience of basketball by scheduling games in prime-time o What is one of the most watched tv events? (Hint: it has “great” commercials” o Many people discuss it the next day – it is on the “agenda” Who Sets the Agenda for the Agenda Setters?  One view regards a handful of news editors as the “gate- keepers”  Alternative view regards candidates as ultimate source of issue salience o How might candidates influence issue salience? Do debates help to “set” the agenda or conversation  Current thinking on news selection focuses on crucial role of public relations professionals working for government agencies, corporations, and interest groups o How would these groups influence the agenda? Critique: Are the Effects too Limited, is the Scope too Wide?  Definition of framing doesn’t include the emotional connotation of key terms used in ongoing public debate of issues o Popularity of framing as a construct in media studies resulted in diverse and ambiguous meanings


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