Between grading for this semester and planning a new class for the next, I'm also mulling over my next research project. Here's me thinking out loud, or at least via blog pixels.
Here's what I'm fiddling with at the moment. I have national survey data on viewing of various television programs, 48 of them actually. So far I've categorized them as news (nine are on Fox News alone, but also major network programs) and entertainment.
Here's my hypothesis: we know the news audience has fragmented along partisan and ideological lines. Is this reflected in entertainment programming?
So what entertainment programs do I have? Stuff like Big Bang Theory, Insider, NCIS, American Idol (it's 2012 data), Dancing with the Stars, etc. Also a bunch of talk programs like The Talk and The View. Also late-night stuff, but that's a special case. As I said, I have 48 specific television programs in all. Before actually analyzing the data, I wonder if it's even an interesting hypothesis that there may, or may not be, partisan migration. I don't think there is. I doubt there's a study here, at least not in these specific programs.
(as an aside, I'm tempted to analyze the nine Fox News programs to tease out differences in the audience)
Sigh. I'd prefer to stick with my main research topic, the surprised electoral loser, but I've pretty much exhausted all my data on that question.