|The ever-expanding media universe offers a wealth of sources of information about the upcoming presidential campaign: wire services, the networks, local news, cable, radio, newspapers, newsmagazines, and opinion magazines. The Internet has come to play an increasingly prominent role. In addition to strong online presences of many traditional news organizations, the Internet allows any motivated individual to become a publisher. Information rapidly circulates in the blogosphere and is minutely diced and sliced; readers must take care to ensure its veracity.|
Goddard's Political Wire
Marc Ambinder "A Reported Blog on Politics" (The Atlantic)
Chris Cillizza "The Fix" (Washington Post)
Mark Halperin "The Page" (Time)
ABC News "The Note"
CBS News Politics
NBC News "First Read"
CNN "Political Ticker"
FOX News Elections
National Journal "Hotline On Call"
Comedy Central "Indecision"
C-SPAN "Road to the White House"
|PBS Vote 2008
CNN "Election Center 2008"
Washington Post "Campaign '08 Highlights"
New York Times "Selected 2008 Campaign Multimedia"
Frontline: "The Choice 2008"
Politics1.com's Presidency 2008
Think about where you get your news from. There's a lot of it out there. As a news consumer you should try to avail yourself of a number of different sources, including from time to time some you might not normally look at. Read, view or listen with a critical eye and ear and consider how well the story portrays the reality of a situation or event.
the quality and quantity of news and election coverage a particular
presents are the available resources (financial, talent, equipment, and
commitment), the needs of advertisers and the audience, established
practices, habits and conventions, the peculiarities of individual
and technology. Thus a local newspaper has a set of strengths and
weaknesses that differ from those of a major network.
Different media have fared better or worse in recent years. In "Lessons of the Election," a special report in the Pew Project for Excellence in Journalism's "The State of the News Media 2009," Tom Rosenstiel and Bill Kovach write of "converging trends of shrinking newsrooms, changing technology, the growing ability of campaigns to communicate directly with the public and a continuing explosion in polling." Print media have suffered from a marked drop in advertising revenue, while more and more people are turning to the web for news about the campaign. The American Society of News Editors reported that in 2008, "American daily newspapers shed 5,900 newsroom jobs...reducing their employment of journalists by 11.3 percent to the levels of the early 1980s." (April 16, 2009 press release) Meanwhile, a Pew Internet & American Life Project survey found that "55% of the entire adult population...went online in 2008 to get involved in the political process or to get news and information about the election."
Depending on the ideological biases of the publisher and the editorial staff, information may also be slanted toward or against various viewpoints. (See Media Research Center and Media Matters for America). And, while the major party candidates are guaranteed coverage, even of their trivial activities, third party candidates typically have a hard time getting coverage. (See Ron Paul statement).
For any given medium, information about the campaign can be packaged in a variety of ways. For example, on a network there are the flagship evening newscasts, morning shows, magazine programs, Sunday morning newsmaker programs, occasional specials, and so forth. Similarly, in a newspaper one finds hard news articles, news analysis, long features, lighter, "Style"-type pieces, photographs, columns, editorials, and editorial cartoons.
Just as campaigns vie for support from voters, news organizations seek to gain loyalty of viewers, readers and surfers. Promos in their own pages or broadcasts, or ads placed in other media highlight programming and personalities and establish brand identity.
A campaign unfolds along a fixed chronological path, with clear markers along the way, and there are only so many approaches a news organization can take in covering it. There are, however, huge differences in the quality and consistency of coverage.
Organization and Focus
On the Scene
Media on Media
Many Other Aspects
Showtime: News Organizations Cover Election Day 2008
Covering the Debates
Media at the 2008 National Conventions. Front page coverage: Republicans | Democrats.
FEATURE: "Obama on the Cover: Magazine Cover Portrayal of the 2008 Campaign"
Early Feature Articles
"Nickelodeon Hits the Campaign Trail With Election-Themed Content, Leading Up to October Kids' Vote" (Aug. 20, 2008)
"The 'CBS Evening News with Katie Couric' Announces Plans for In-Depth Election Coverage Focusing on Issues Most Important to Americans during the Final Months of Campaign '08" (Aug. 13, 2008)
Union Leader (see NH Primary '08, Granite Status)
Reports and Notes
A progressive view "Top Ten media failings in 2004." A conservative view "The Ten Worst Media Distortions of Campaign 2004."
Project for Excellence in Journalism reports:
Intelliseek's BlogPulseTM Campaign Radar 2004 (Oct. 27, 2004 press release)
2000 Coverage--Reports, Aspects
Alliance for Better Campaigns--"Gouging Democracy: How the Television Industry Profiteered on Campaign 2000"
Alliance for Better Campaigns--"Broadcast Television & Campaign 2000: Millions from Ads, Seconds for Discourse" (6/13/00)
Best Practices 2000 (Wisconsin Public Television)
NewsHour with Jim Lehrer's Vote 2004
Washington Post's Elections 2004
BBC's Vote USA 2004
ABC News' The Note
Transcripts of CNN's Inside Politics
Frontline's "The Choice 2004"
Newseum's Front Pages
Des Moines Register's Campaign 2004
The Gazette's Iowa Caucus
"Iowa Press"-Iowa Public Television
Lee Enterprises' IowaPulse
New Hampshire Primary
Union Leader's NH Primary
Concord Monitor's Primary Monitor
Frontline's "The Choice"
|Copyright © 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010 Eric M. Appleman/Democracy in Action||