Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Writing Questions for the ANES

I have proposed some media items for the 2010-2012 American National Election Studies latest set of data collection.  You can see all the proposals here, including mine which you can read in pdf format here.  The overall study is the ANES evaluation of government and society, so I proposed asking questions about people's consumption of what I called (for lack of a sexier term) opinion-based news.  This includes Rush Limbaugh's radio program, Glenn Beck's wackiness on Fox News, and the like. 

The ANES in general tends to, um, suck when it comes to measuring media use, asking a broad TV news exposure question, a newspaper one, etc., with little differentiation between the kinds of programs watched, or websites viewed, or radio programs listened to.  If we're going to understand how people evaluate government, we need to know more about their exposure to content that spends most of its time -- blasting government.

Will my items be included?  I suspect not.  My theoretical rationale is rather weak despite the obvious real-world ramifications and Tea Party overtones of whether people watch Beck and Hannity and the rest.  But I had to try because I think it's important.  And there are priming and framing theoretical approaches that fit here with these items, though I'm not sure I did a particularly good job getting those across.

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