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Chapter 8 Mass Media and Public Opinions

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katie diaz

on 23 May 2014

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Transcript of Chapter 8 Mass Media and Public Opinions

Chapter 8 Mass Media and Public Opinions
Section 1 The Formation of Public Opinion
process of political socialization: each person acquires political opinion
Section 1 The Formation of Public Opinion
teach values of American political system
-salute flag, recite Pledge of Alliegance, learn about presidents

experience/ informal learning/ decisions/ compromise
Katie Diaz, Bettina Mengoni, Kayla Caban
C. Other Factors
mass media - communication that reach large, widely dispersed audiences (masses of people) simultaneously.
- newspaper, magazine, radio, internet, TV
Section 2: Measuring Public Opinion
Section 2 Measuring Public Opinion
The Best Measure of Public Opinion -Polls
Section 1 The Formation of Public Opinion
2. Definition
public opinion - attitudes held by significant number of people on the matters of the government and politics
1. Family
parents say, sibling stories, watching tv

children pick up fundamental attitudes

2. Peer Groups
peer groups - people whom on a regularly associates (friends, classmates, neighbors).
3. Opinion Leaders
opinion leader - any person who has an unusually strong influence on the views of others
- ex: distinct minority

hold public office, professionals, active members in local communities.
4. Historic Events
ex: Great Depression poverty

A. What is public opinion?
Section 1 The Formation of the Public Opinion
B. Family and Education
Section 1 The Formation of Public Opinion
2. The Schools
Section 1 The Formation of Public Opinion
1. Mass Media
Section 1 The Formation of Public Opinion
Section 1 The Formation of Public Opinion
Section 1 The Formation of Public Opinion
1. Different Publics
public affairs - public issues, making of public policies
ex: assassination of John F. Kennedy and Martin Luther King Jr. civil rights movement, Vietnam War
1. Measuring Public Opinion
The general shape of public opinion on an issue can be found through a variety
some examples are:
voting, lobbying, books, pamphlets, magazine, and newspaper articles , radio,
expressed publicity: film, protest demonstration, billboard, vote against candidate
A. Television
B. Newspaper
Newspapers used to have the biggest impact on politics until television came around.

Newspapers started in 1704 with The Boston News Letter then other papers soon followed.

The first amendment added to the constitution was in regards to these Newspapers guaranteeing rights to the freedom of press.
More than 10,000 Newspapers published around the U.S. today.
Newspapers rank 2nd to television as a
public source to government and politics.
1. The Roles of Mass Media
Nov. 2, 1920 on KDKA presidential elections were broadcasted on the radio.
NBC- 1926

Section 1
The Formation of Public Opinion
Section 2
Public Opinion

Section 3
The Mass Media
ABC- 1943
Today most radio's don't devote their air time to news or at least political news. Radios are now devoted to mainly just music and what they think the public find entertaining.
C. Radio
D. Magazines
Benjamin Franklin started one of
the first magazines called General
For decades magazines served as the only national medium, before radio and television.
Media and Politics
Public Agenda
Electoral Politics
Media don't necessarily tell the people what to think but they definitely tell them what to think about.
Media helps candidates to appeal directly to the people without the help of party organizations.
How voters see a candidates character, personality, abilities, etc. has a big influence on voting behavior.
Limits on Media Influence
Most people that watch and keep up with news (which isn't many, about 15%) only watch things that agree with their own view points.
Radio and television normally only skim the news and report on what they think is the most entertaining and interesting to keep attention of viewers.
People use mass media as a source of entertainment opposed to information.
Public opinion polls are devices that attempts to collect information by asking people questions.

Another way used in the 1930's was straw votes with were a way of getting the public's opinion by asking a big group of people the same question.
Section 2 Measuring Public Opinion
The Polling Process

Constructing a sample:
selecting a sample which is a representative slice of the total universe
Now they draw a random sample which is a probability sample.
Last but not least they draw a quota sample which deliberately constructed by reflecting several major characteristics.
Section 2 Measuring Public Opinion
Preparing Valid Questions
Some ways of preparing valid questions were at first going door to door asking questions but today however they call a set of random numbers selecting area codes from all over.
Telephone surveys are less expensive than door to door polling.
Section 2 Measuring Public Opinion
Analyze and Report Finding
Once receiving all the polls whether its scientific or not they figure out people attitude towards these poll questions.

Pollsters use these technologies to tabulate and interpret their data, draw their conclusions, and publish their findings.
Section 2 Measuring Public Opinion
Limits on the Impact of Public Opinion
When polling they have to remember that our system of constitutional government is not designed to give free, unrestricted play to public opinion.
Keeping in mind all the doctrines:
-separation of power
-checks and balances
-civil rights
-protecting minority interests
Section 2 Measuring Public Opinion
Taking a Poll
1. Define the population to be polled.
2. Construct a sample.
3. Prepare valid questions .
4. Select and control the means by which the poll with be taken.
5. Report your finding.
Television has always gone hand in hand with politics starting as early as 1939 when President Roosevelt started his fireside chats.
Media has the power to focus public's attention to particular issues.
Full transcript