The Power of The Media

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The power of the media
Merits Demerits
Some channels have 24 hour news Some channels may have bias
coverage e.g. ­ Oprah Winfrey endorsed Obama
Always available to view in 2008
Chat shows may have a phone-in May have a small amount of analysis
session where viewers can ask and comment
questions Not ideal for those who may miss out on
Viewers, the ordinary voters are able to the complexities of events/issues
get their questions answered, may help However, may allow those who are less
in their decision process politically knowledgeable to be involved
in politics
Can be extremely powerful and have Media appearances may backfire
great impact on swaying voters Negative commercials may send out
e.g. ­ 1964 Daisy Commercial the wrong message
(Democrat) only aired once and was not (e.g. ­ 1998 spot about crime featured a
explicit about the connection between story about a criminal who had been let
the commercial and opponent out of jail (state of Bush's opponent was
Goldwater but voters made the governor to) ­ later transpired that the
connection and it reinforced fears released criminal was black, accused of
about a Goldwater presidency playing on fears of black people and
crime)
Opponents may later pick up on broken
promises that were previously made on
television
Chat shows can mock candidates
Bad for public image and credibility
e.g. ­ 2008, Saturday Night Live
featured a funny impersonation of
Sarah Palin

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