Objective Model Reported as facts without distortion by personal feelings, prejudices, interpretations Neutrality (factual v. interpretive claims) Balance Reliability
Is Objectivity Possible? Major Lessons of Chapter 1 Major news media are owned/controlled by major corporations. Mainstream media outlets have been consolidated into fewer and fewer hands, each of which is part of the corporate system. Inner-ring or upper tier media outlets have grown larger and more influential through horizontal and vertical integration. Agenda setting media serve in numerous ways with other corporations including interlocking directorates. Media are mainly concerned with profit/advertising dollars. Media rely heavily on information provided by government sources. The powerful have greater ability to produce “flak” in order to influence media coverage. Perspectives that threaten the status quo are least likely to appear in the media.
Social Construction Social problems are “constructed” (i.e., created), often through the media Reporting of real problem Blown out of proportion Typification (frames/narratives) Linkage Policy created
Newsweek’s “Coke Plague” Story (March 17, 1986) Shocking Numbers and Graphic Accounts: Quantified Images of Drug Problems in the Print Media James D. Orcutt & J. Blake Turner Social Problems, Vol. 40, No. 2. (May, 1993), pp. 190-206.
Panel A – actual data (depicts “lifetime” use not “current” use) Newsweek’s “Coke Plague” Story (March 17, 1986)
Panel B – editorial deletions – Cut out large increases in late 1970s – Cut out foundation or “context” of data Newsweek’s “Coke Plague” Story (March 17, 1986)
Panel C – tinkering with figure – Made a “finer” Y scale (makes increase look larger) Newsweek’s “Coke Plague” Story (March 17, 1986)
Panel D – more tinkering with figure – Added depth (3-D) to make look larger – Called it a “plague” Newsweek’s “Coke Plague” Story (March 17, 1986)