Hostile Media Effect

by Limbic on April 16, 2006

Brilliant post from Mixing Memory about Hostile Media Effects

Here are two things that, when taken together, cry out for explanation. Over the last five decades, study after study of media bias has found little or no evidence of systematic bias in either direction, and a meta-analysis of bias studies over 6 decades, using several different measures of bias, found no bias in newspaper reporting, and only a miniscule, inconsequential right-wing bias in magazines, and left-wing bias on television. Yet, while in 1988, only 12% of the public believed the media to be systematically biased, that percentage has grown steadily over the last two decades, with 62% of Americans believing the media to be biased in 2005. And in almost every case, the perceived bias is towards the opposition. How is it that, over the same period in which studies have consistently shown a lack of media bias, more and more people have come to believe that it exists, and that it favors their opponents’ viewpoints?

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