Media trust and the COVID-19 pandemic: an analysis of short-term trust changes, their ideological drivers and consequences in Switzerland. - In: Communication research, ISSN 1552-3810, Bd. 50 (2023), 2, S. 205-229
We analyze short-term media trust changes during the COVID-19 pandemic, their ideological drivers and consequences based on panel data in German-speaking Switzerland. We thereby differentiate trust in political information from different types of traditional and non-traditional media. COVID-19 serves as a natural experiment, in which citizens? media trust at the outbreak of the crisis is compared with the same variables after the severe lockdown measures were lifted. Our data reveal that (1) media trust is consequential as it is associated with people's willingness to follow Covid-19 regulations; (2) media trust changes during the pandemic, with trust levels for most media decreasing, with the exception of public service broadcasting; (3) trust losses are hardly connected to ideological divides in Switzerland. Our findings highlight that public service broadcasting plays an exceptional role in the fight against a pandemic and that contrary to the US, no partisan trust divide occurs.
Internationale Perspektiven zur Informationsvermeidung während der Coronapandemie: ein Vergleich der Medienbewertungen und der Mediennutzung in Pakistan, Deutschland und Indonesien :
International perspectives on information avoidance during the coronavirus pandemic: comparing media evaluations and media use in Pakistan, Germany, and Indonesia. - In: Studies in communication and media, ISSN 2192-4007, Bd. 11 (2022), 3, S. 477-507
This study investigates the comparative prevalence of information avoidance concerning the coronavirus and its relationship with media evaluation and use. We argue that information avoidance is a behavior that broadly signifies the intermittent and conscious practice of shunning specific content. It is problematic because having an informed citizenry is essential, especially during a global pandemic. Given the global affectedness of the world by the coronavirus, we believe in the necessity for international comparative research and conduct our study in Pakistan, Germany, and Indonesia. Based on the existing literature, which stems predominantly from the Global North, we assume that media use and its evaluations are associated with information avoidance and test our assumptions against cross-cultural differences. Hence, we collected data in Germany (n = 822), Indonesia (n = 1164), and Pakistan (n = 467). The results indicate important differences with regard to the prevalence of information avoidance as well as media use and its evaluations across the three countries. The analysis further confirms a rather stable relationship between media evaluations with information avoidance but revealed interesting differences in the associations between media use and avoidance.
News sourcing practices in climate reporting in Indonesia. - In: Journalism studies, ISSN 1461-670X, Bd. 23 (2022), 14, S. 1841-1859
This study investigates news sourcing practices in climate change reporting in Indonesia, a country that contributes significant carbon emissions and is among the world’s most vulnerable nations in the face of climate crises. This paper examines two types of news sources: sources in the form of persons or actors whom journalists ask for information and sources in the form of international news flows from news wires and international media organizations. Through qualitative study using semi-structured interviews with 14 journalists and two editors-in-chief, I found three types of news sourcing practices that are currently adopted: news sourcing practices that use national actors as the main source; practices that use international news sources as cognitive inventory; and practices that rely on the international news flow. These practices are highly influenced by audience needs, the internet algorithm, and the news platforms for which the journalists work. The analysis also elucidates the transnational cooperation practices of several foreign public broadcasts in Indonesia.
Between impact, politics, and action: frames of climate change in Indonesian print and online media. - In: Environmental communication, ISSN 1752-4040, Bd. 16 (2022), 7, S. 942-959
The lack of research on climate communication in the countries of the Global South is a frequently criticized research gap. This study addresses this problem by investigating the framing of climate change in eight print and online media outlets in Indonesia, the biggest emerging country in Southeast Asia. It identified three frames using cluster analysis: the “climate impact and science” frame, the “climate politics” frame, and the “climate action” frame. Further analyses revealed that print and online media used these frames selectively, as they relied on different news sources (national and international) and gave voice to various actors. These findings demonstrate the organizational influence on climate reporting. Furthermore, the study discovered that climate adaptation strategies were almost absent in the media coverage despite the urgency of this topic for the Indonesian public. Why the media ignore this important aspect needs to be investigated in future research focused on frame-building processes.
When news topics annoy - exploring issue fatigue and subsequent information avoidance and extended coping strategies. - In: Journalism and media, ISSN 2673-5172, Bd. 3 (2022), 3, S. 538-556
This paper scrutinizes the phenomenon of issue fatigue and its consequences. Issue fatigue results from overexposure to a news topic that has been on the media’s agenda for an extended period of time. Fatigued recipients become annoyed, and no longer wish to be exposed to the topic. Based on the findings of an explorative qualitative study, a quantitative online survey was conducted in Germany, Mexico, and Pakistan (N = 481). Using cluster analysis, we identified an emotional and a cognitive type of issue fatigue, and investigated how these types react. Both types of fatigued recipients avoided further news about the respective issue in traditional news media (= information avoidance). Differences were observed concerning the strategies to handle fatigue (= coping strategies): recipients of the emotional type posted about their fatigue in social media; recipients of the cognitive type turned to information in sources other than the mainstream news. Taking into account country-specific differences, we concluded that, generally, issue fatigue - via information avoidance - results in an uninformed citizenry. This can be a hurdle for the functioning of an established democracy or for the success of democratic transitions. Posting about issue fatigue, which was more frequent in Mexico and Pakistan, might ‘infect’ others, and intensify problems resulting from issue fatigue. Turning to alternative sources can be either beneficial or problematic for the development of a well-informed citizenry, depending on whether alternative sources provide reliable and truthful information
Negative effects of long-lasting media attention to public issues on recipients: conceptualizing issue fatigue. - In: Studies in communication sciences, ISSN 1424-4896, Bd. 22 (2022), 2, S. 385-401
A significant amount of political communication research is grounded in the dynamics of the media’s and the public’s attention to public issues, assuming that the news media draw the public’s attention to issues, thereby fostering an informed and participating citizenry. However, there is evidence from several countries that this mechanism is disrupted for issues with high shares of news coverage during a period. Against this background, this article scrutinizes the idea that recipients become fatigued from these issues in the news. Having transferred findings on overexposure from other media stimuli to the news environment, issue fatigue is defined as a negative cognitive and affective state consisting of decreasing issue-specific information processing involvement, perceived information overload, and increasing boredom, annoyance, and anger toward an issue. Issue fatigue can lead to the avoidance of information about the issue, thus serving as a new explanatory approach to avoidance of media information at an issue level. Further consequences, causes, and the development of issue fatigue are discussed.
Intergroup relations and media: the effects of media system quality in explaining immigration attitudes. - In: Studies in communication sciences, ISSN 1424-4896, Bd. 22 (2022), 2, S. 363-384
From an intergroup relations perspective, attitudes toward immigration derive from assessments of immigrants’ ethnic proximity to the host society. However, attitudes are embedded not only in the notion of intergroup relations, they are influenced by the information environment in which public discourse about immigration is shaped. This paper investigates whether the quality of the media system contributes to the emergence of a well-informed public that is more likely to reinforce democratic values and thus have more positive attitudes toward immigration. The European Social Survey data (2002-2018) from 19 European countries are combined with media quality indicators from the Varieties of Democracy project and studied in a cross-national comparative perspective. Results confirm that Europeans prefer immigrants that are ethnically more similar to the majority of the host society, regardless of time or given country. Furthermore, attitudes are more positive in countries with stronger public services. Moreover, a higher quality media system that reflects the level of media freedom, opinion plurality, self-governance, and objectivity, fosters pro-immigration attitudes, especially for immigrants who are ethnically different from the host society.
Learning about climate politics during COP 21: explaining a diminishing knowledge gap. - In: Public understanding of science, ISSN 1361-6609, Bd. 31 (2022), 5, S. 617-633
A basic understanding of climate politics is necessary for citizens to assess their government's policies. Media use is supposed to enable learning, while widening knowledge gaps. We analyze whether such a gap opened up in times of intense media coverage during the 2015 climate conference in Paris and explain learning through hierarchical regression analyses, drawing on a 3-month panel survey (n = 1121) in Germany. We find a diminishing knowledge gap: people with low previous knowledge catch up on the better informed, but overall knowledge remained low and learning was limited. This suggests a ceiling effect: possibly journalistic media did not provide enough new information for the well-informed. Closing knowledge gaps may also be explained by the media system with public television and regional newspapers reaching broad segments of the population. Higher knowledge was predicted less by media use than by education, concern, and being male.
Die Energiewende aus Sicht der Bevölkerung : Ergebnisse einer bundesweiten Befragung im Vorfeld der Bundestagswahl 2021. - Ilmenau : Technische Universität Ilmenau, Fachgebiet Empirische Medienforschung und Politische Kommunikation. - 1 Online-Ressource (48 Seiten)
Prioritizing development, vying for attention : factors influencing the practice of environmental journalism in the global South. - In: The handbook of international trends in environmental communication, (2022), S. 220-231
Research on environmental journalism in the global South is on the increase, but it is still in its infancy. Existing literature has noted the low coverage of environmental issues in the media worldwide, including in the global South. This essay identifies factors that influence this low coverage and the practice of environmental journalism in the global South based on existing literature. It presents three factors using the media sociology approach. Key among the factors is the development ideology, which has created the perception that journalists should complement government efforts in fostering national development in the ex-colonial nations of the global South. It has macro-level influence on the practice of journalism as reflected in the prioritization of government sources in news production. Its influence is also apparent in journalism education in the global South. At the micro level, the ideology influences role perceptions of journalists in the region.