Question One: Differences in Media Bias and Audience Bias
Media bias is the partiality or recognized bias of expression by news anchors and news producers in the mass media when selecting reports and stories they should cover. The terminology "media bias" entails an invasive or prevalent partiality breaching the principles of journalism, instead of the viewpoint of a particular journalist or editorial (John 37). Globally, there exist different degrees of media bias. The most common types of media biases take place when the media backs- up or attack a certain political affiliation, a contestant or a perception. However, there are other non- political media biases expressed by journalists (Bertrande and Sendhil 105). The media biases include -:
Political media bias
The political media bias involves-:
Coverage bias. Coverage bias also referred to as visibility bias is a partiality that occurs when journalists do not consider making the actors or issues noticeable in the news.
Selection bias, also known as selectivity or gate-keeping bias occurs when journalists and news producers select or deselect stories mostly on a perceptional basis. When the media focuses on political actors and their desired policy issues, the media creates a selection bias referred to as the agenda bias.
Statement bias is a media bias that occurs when journalists and news producers slant towards or in opposition to a certain actor or issue. Statement bias is also known as tonality or presentation bias.
Non-political media bias includes -:
Advertising bias. Advertising partiality occurs when the media slant stories to delight the advertisers.
Concision bias. When media tend to report news that journalist can summarize in a few words, it results in crowding out of many unusual views that consume a lot of time to be explained, thus causing concision bias.
Another type of media partiality is the corporate bias that occurs when media houses select or slant information to delight the owners of the corporate media.
Mainstream bias. When media tries to report what every other person is reporting alongside avoidance of stories that are likely to offend people, it results in mainstream bias.
Sensationalism. When media gives too much attention in reporting stories that are not ordinary, it tries to create an impression to the audience that such unordinary events are more common than the ordinary events thus creating sensation bias.
Structural bias. When media gives too much or too little attention to an issue due to the worthiness of the news and media schedule, it results in structural bias.
False balance, Media causes false balance when it covers an issue as having one proportionate side despite the issue having unequal evidence.
On the other hand, audience bias occurs when the audience chooses which materials to read or view. The audience choice makes the media to present what their audience requires to avoid losing them. Audience choice leads to media bias as the media tends to give distorted information to meet the audience's preferences.
Question Two: A Theory that Relates to Media and Audience Bias
Selective exposure is a theory that can suit media and audience bias. Selective exposure theory states that individuals possess the tendency to choose information that supports their choice regardless of the authenticity of the information.
Question Three: A Class Assignment that Relates to Media and Audience Bias
A Class Handout on Media Bias
Course Name: Communications Research
Discuss Group Allegiance and Perception of Media Bias.
Group Allegiance and Perception of Media Bias relates to the concept of hostile media perception. Individuals tend to perceive media stories of intergroup disagreements as biased against their group. Group allegiance of either the perceiver or the sender of the information plays a significant role in influencing the perception of media bias.
With that concept in mind, students are expected to discuss on group allegiance and perception of media bias, taking into consideration both the receiver and the sender of the information.
Individual assignment element: At least 275 words (100% weighting for the module)
Minimal competence level: Did you do the assignment? Did you turn it on time? Did you include your name? 30%
Understanding of the concept of hostile media perception 40%
Creativity and effort 30%
Group Allegiance and Perception of Media Bias
Group Allegiance and Perception of Media Bias relates to the concept of hostile media perception. Individuals tend to perceive media stories of intergroup disagreements as biased against their group. Group allegiance of either the perceiver or the sender of the information plays a significant role in influencing the perception of media bias. With the fact that the receiver and the sender of the information perceive the media as biased in, the implication is that bias is partly a perception.
Media bias is a primarily intergroup platform (Robert and Kimberly 67). Group membership of the participants forms the strongest predictor of the media bias hostility degree. The cognitive theory underpins the hostile media perceptions. Cognitive bias theory forms the basis of both false balance and audience bias. Cognitive partiality directs information receivers to choose on which information to consume. Also, cognitive theory directs Media to cover an issue as proportionate on one side and disproportionate on the other side despite the issue having unequal evidence. Group membership receives and retains information on particular content, but they classify an uneven quantity of the information as favoring the other side thus creating hostile media perception (Ali, et al 45). The implication is that people tend to accumulate a lot of partially-based perceptions in consideration of the value and behavior of the group. Therefore, when media presents group members with a goal-oriented and equilibrium coverage of events, the group members feel that the counter-arguments are not valid and thus media should exclude the information.
In line with the above explanation, it is evident that the strength of group membership participation predicts the perception of media bias. Moreover, there exists a correlation between audience bias and media bias since audience bias partly influences media bias. Also, group membership tends to perceive non- subjective media coverage as biased when the media does not meet the member's needs, thus bringing the concept of hostile media perceptions.
Ali, O.I.Flaounas, T De Bie, N. Mosdell, J.Lewis, and N Christianini, Automating News Content Analysis:An Implication of Gender Bias and Readability, JMLR: Workshop and Conference Proceedings, Workshop on Application of Patterns Analysis, Vol. 11, Cumberland Lounge, UK, pp: 36-43, 2010.
Bertrande, Marriane and Sendhil Mullainathan. "Are Emily and Greg more Employable than Lakisha and Jama? A Field Experiment on Labor Market Discrimination." American Economic Review. 94.4 (2004): 991-1013. Print.
John H., McManus. "The SMELL Test". Detecting Bull: How to Identify a Bias and Junk Journalism in Print, Broadcast and the Worldwide Wed 2nd.ed. Sunnyvale, CA: Unvarnished, 2012, 146-180. Print.
Robert M. Entman & Kimberly A. Gross, Race to Judgement: Stereotyping Media and Criminal Defendants, 71 Law and Contemporary Problems 93-133 (Fall 2008).
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