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Journalism 614: Opinion and Perception I: Third-person effects.

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Presentation on theme: "Journalism 614: Opinion and Perception I: Third-person effects."— Presentation transcript:

1 Journalism 614: Opinion and Perception I: Third-person effects

2 Concerns about the Media  Various categories of media spark concern: –Political Advertising –Pornography –Misogynistic Music/Videos –Violent Television –What else? –What is the nature of the concern?

3 Basic Third Person Concepts  The Third Person Perception (3pp) –“Others more affected by media messages than I am”  The Third Person Effect (3pe) –Cognitive and behavioral consequences of the 3pp –E.g., willingness to accept media censorship

4 Theoretical Underpinnings  Why do we see others as being more affected by media messages than ourselves? –Ego-enhancing motivational bias? “I am better than you/others” “I am less affected by negative media messages” “I am not as easy to manipulate as you”

5 Past Research on 3pp  Perloff (1996) reports that 15/16 studies reviewed found support for 3pp for range of negative content: –TV violence (Innes and Zeitz, 1988) –Pornography (Gunther, 1995) –Libelous news stories (Cohen et al., 1988; Gunther, 1991) –Product advertisements (Thorson & Coyle, 1994; Shah et al. 1999) –Negative political ads (Cohen & Davis, 1991) –Several other forms of potentially harmful media content

6 Past Research on 3pe  The Third Person Effect (3pe) –Most common effect: desire for censorship  Results supporting the 3pe: –Gunther (1995): greater 3pp associated with greater support for restrictions on pornography –Rojas, Shah & Faber (1996): 3pp associated with desire to censor TV violence, pornography and general willingness to censor

7 Antecedents and Consequences of Third-person Perceptions  McLeod, Eveland & Nathanson (1997). “Support for censorship of violent and misogynic rap lyrics: An analysis of the third-person effect” Communication Research  Research Questions: –Does the 3pp occur for violent and misogynistic rap? –Is there a connection between 3pp and 3pe? –Is the link related to Paternalism? “Holier than thou--You are affected, I must protect you” Ego-enhancing orientation

8 Study 1: Methods  202 Participants in 2 anti-social conditions  Measures: –Third-person differentials (self vs. others) Three 3pp comparison groups (in order of increasing social distance): –Other Delaware students –People your age in cities like New York and Los Angeles –The average person –Support for censorship scale

9 Study 1: Violent Rap “Out one night, Yo, just chillin’ with my crew we were actin’ wild cuz I didn’t have nothing better to do Got a nine at my waist, Stay out of my face. You mess with me, Right here’ll be your resting place....” -South Central Cartel

10 Study 1: Misogynistic Rap It’s late one night and I’m ready to dip Cuz I’m kinda drunk with an ugly chick Big butt, big chest, and kinda stacked Six foot two and she’s also fat Be my girl what? It ain’t all that Got weed in your head, knock-kneed and fat Get some understanding, you’re just a skeez I’m out for booty and to be pleased Get an ugly chick. -Too Live Crew

11 Study 1: Results for 3pp

12 Study 1: Results for 3pe  3pp predicts support for censorship –3pp differential better predictor than overall perceived negative effects

13 Study 2: Behind 3pp  McLeod, Detenber & Eveland (2000). Behind the Third-person Effect: Differentiating Perceptual Processes for Self and Other” Journal of Communication  Do people use a different psych process for estimating self and other effects?

14 Study 2: Antecedents of 3pp  Past research suggest several potential predictors of perceived effects: –Perceived exposure to content –Perceived common sense of content target –Paternalism –Perceived anti-social nature of content

15 Study 2: Methods  Participants: –359 students (read sample lyrics and answer survey)  Content referents (combined for the analysis): –1. Violent anti-social rap –2. Misogynic anti-social rap –3. Violent anti-social death metal –4. Misogynic anti-social death metal  Data analysis: –Separate path analyses for self and other

16 Study 2: Violent Death Metal “...Kill the preacher’s only son, watch the infant die. Bodily dismemberment, drink the purest blood Unrelenting need to kill, death upon you now. Anxiously awaiting the next in line.” -Slayer

17 Study 2: Misogynistic Death Metal “...Shave her head and throw her down. That’s where she belongs--on the ground. She’s just an object for him to crush. Pound her head until it’s mush.” -Visceral Eviscerations

18 Study 2: Conclusions  Significant predictors for self: –Common sense (reduces perceived effects) –Anti-social lyrics (reduces perceived effects)  Significant predictors for others: –Perceived exposure (increases perceived effects) –Paternalism (increases perceived effects)

19 Study 2: More Conclusions  People use different model of effects to estimate: –Conditional effects model for self (internal factors mediate effects) –Direct effects model for others (“you are what you eat”)

20 Big Questions About 3PP & 3PE  Is the judgment of effect on self based on an assumption about “dosage” or “potency”? –Ex. I am not effected because I do not see it  Is the judgment of effect of other based on an estimate of a small effect on many people or a large effect on a few –Ex. Porn may make sociopaths dangerous


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