Soft News and political cynicism

Soft News With Hard Consequences?
January 26, 2016 – 07:22 pm
Overconsuming soft news
  1. 1Amsterdam School of Communication Research, University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands
  1. Mark Boukes, Amsterdam School of Communication Research, University of Amsterdam, Kloveniersburgwal 48, 1012CX Amsterdam, The Netherlands. Email: markboukes{at}gmail.com

Abstract

The possibly detrimental consequences of soft news are subject of popular and academic debate. This study investigates how watching particular news genres—soft versus hard—relates to cynicism about politics among Dutch citizens. A nuanced and novel scale measuring relative exposure to soft versus hard news is introduced using nonparametric unidimensional unfolding. The analysis of three public opinion surveys demonstrates a strong relationship between people’s position on this hard versus soft news exposure scale and political cynicism. People who watched relatively more soft news were more cynical about politics than people who watched relatively more hard news. This relationship was not conditional on individuals’ level of political knowledge and interest.

Article Notes

  • Declaration of Conflicting Interests The authors declared no potential conflicts of interest with respect to the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article.
  • Funding The authors received no financial support for the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article.
Source: crx.sagepub.com
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