Party Advertising in Newspapers: A source of media bias?

Author(s)
Jakob-Moritz Eberl, Markus Wagner, Hajo Boomgaarden
Abstract

Journalists increasingly fear that their work may be influenced by advertisers’ interests. While studies have found that commercial advertisers exert pressure on news producers, equivalent research on political advertising is scarce. Using a rigorous methodological approach, we investigate whether party advertising led to three different forms of media bias in newspaper coverage of the Austrian general election in 2013. We combine data on party newspaper advertising (N≈1300), party press releases (N≈1900) and coverage in seven newspapers (N≈4200). There are no statistically significant effects of party advertising on media bias, though there is indicative evidence of differences between media genres. Our findings advance the study of advertiser pressure in the field of political journalism and political communication and clarify a heated public debate.

Organisation(s)
Department of Communication, Department of Government
Journal
Journalism Studies
Volume
19
Pages
782-802
ISSN
1461-670X
DOI
https://doi.org/10.1080/1461670X.2016.1234356
Publication date
2016
Peer reviewed
Yes
Austrian Fields of Science 2012
506014 Comparative politics, 508008 Media analysis
Portal url
https://ucris.univie.ac.at/portal/en/publications/party-advertising-in-newspapers-a-source-of-media-bias(a112989d-441f-4d0f-99fc-84a2e404d115).html