Top of the agenda Media opportunities in an

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Top of the agenda Media opportunities in an election Media Exploitation Master. Class, 9

Top of the agenda Media opportunities in an election Media Exploitation Master. Class, 9 Dec 03 Guy Berger, Rhodes University

On the agenda: 1. Players 2. Elections 3. Impact 4. Codes 5. Policy &

On the agenda: 1. Players 2. Elections 3. Impact 4. Codes 5. Policy & strategy

1. Players 2. Elections 3. Multiple media 4. Impact 5. Policy & strategy

1. Players 2. Elections 3. Multiple media 4. Impact 5. Policy & strategy

THE ACTORS: • the public POLL • the media • the politicians

THE ACTORS: • the public POLL • the media • the politicians

Specific players: • media: broadcast-print-web, public-govt-privatecommunity, premier outlets, media stars § public: general public,

Specific players: • media: broadcast-print-web, public-govt-privatecommunity, premier outlets, media stars § public: general public, civil society groups incl NGOs, business, global forces, individuals. § politicians: the parties, the govt, the civil service. § Qtn: who dances with whom in an election?

3 models of poor practice • • • Politicians Public = limited Politicians Media

3 models of poor practice • • • Politicians Public = limited Politicians Media = futile Media Public = misses point • A threesome is better than a couple! Need the triangle of politicians-media-public – But which of the three leads the dance?

Four models of how the relationship works: 1. 2. 3. 4. Politician-driven Media-centred People

Four models of how the relationship works: 1. 2. 3. 4. Politician-driven Media-centred People pushing Integrated model

1. Politician-driven model 2 MEDIA COVERAGE 1 POLITICIANS PUBLIC + OPINION 3 i. e.

1. Politician-driven model 2 MEDIA COVERAGE 1 POLITICIANS PUBLIC + OPINION 3 i. e. politicians set the pace, media are passive: Opportunity: give comments on different parties, call for wider coverage than only the parties.

2. Media-centred model POLITICIANS 1 2 MEDIA COVERAGE PUBLIC + OPINION 3 i. e.

2. Media-centred model POLITICIANS 1 2 MEDIA COVERAGE PUBLIC + OPINION 3 i. e. Media is active agent. “Impartiality does not require editorial staff to be unquestioning” ABC Opportunity: Tip off the Watchdog, Offer yourself to give balanced platform, Contribute to voter ed, Stage events

3. Public pushing MEDIA 2 COVERAGE 1 PUBLIC + OPINION POLITICIANS 3 i. e.

3. Public pushing MEDIA 2 COVERAGE 1 PUBLIC + OPINION POLITICIANS 3 i. e. The public is the driving force Opportunity: Get parties respond to public, not vice versa

4. Integrated model 2 PUBLIC + OPINION 1 MEDIA COVERAGE POLITICIANS 3 i. e.

4. Integrated model 2 PUBLIC + OPINION 1 MEDIA COVERAGE POLITICIANS 3 i. e. dynamic interaction Opportunity: Be sensitive to the full triangle

Thus, your opportunities: 1. Politician-driven Comment on different parties, call for wider coverage than

Thus, your opportunities: 1. Politician-driven Comment on different parties, call for wider coverage than only parties as stakeholders. 2. Media-centred Alert the Watchdog, Offer yourself to give balanced platform, Contribute to voter ed, Stage events. 3. People pushing Put qtns to politicians via the media, set their agenda. 4. Integrated model: all the above

1. Players 2. Elections 3. Multiple media 4. Impact 5. Policy & strategy

1. Players 2. Elections 3. Multiple media 4. Impact 5. Policy & strategy

Media & democracy Take the 4 th estate label seriously: • Recognise role in

Media & democracy Take the 4 th estate label seriously: • Recognise role in democratic governance. • Different to other estates, but complimentary and part of the whole. • Media also a check & balance, esp in age of globalisation and international spotlight. • SPECIAL ROLE: make a vibrant public sphere where matters of common significance (esp. Power) are contested in court of public opinion.

So what is an election? • POLITICAL SUPERMARKET MODEL: • Choose from the offerings

So what is an election? • POLITICAL SUPERMARKET MODEL: • Choose from the offerings of names, faces and rhetoric of politicians. • May get coverage of policy commodities on offer from the salesmen. • Maybe even comparison of the wares. • Perhaps analysis of process of political marketing, and how the parties promote their products. • ROLE: helps consumers make informed choice

So what is an election? • ACTIVE CITIZENSHIP MODEL: • Active agents are not

So what is an election? • ACTIVE CITIZENSHIP MODEL: • Active agents are not those in the “beauty contest”, but those judging it. • Focus not on consumer/spectator, but citizen actor. • Image is of an agenda-setting public. • Poll = a time when people can hold politicians accountable for performance to date. • Party promises for tomorrow are contextualised against this background. • ROLE: supports & mobilises civil society

Whose poll: politicians or people? • How you view elections affects the kinds of

Whose poll: politicians or people? • How you view elections affects the kinds of coverage you seek: • Supermarket view: election news is about staged events and party campaigns; • Citizenship view: news is about public participation and what people see as the popular issues + politician reaction. • Can you contribute to informed choice? • Are you a visible part of the “people”?

Balancing the benefits of both • Supermarket view: short-term is important - who wins,

Balancing the benefits of both • Supermarket view: short-term is important - who wins, and how legitimately, is indeed a critical issue. It can also poison or perfume the longerterm too. How will you be perceived? • Citizenship view: longer-term view: build culture of democracy, accountability, political tolerance, and viability of peaceful conflict resolution through voting. How will you be perceived? • Opportunity: remember both short & longer-term aspects of media exposure for you from the poll.

1. Players 2. Elections 3. Multiple media 4. Impact 5. Policy & strategy

1. Players 2. Elections 3. Multiple media 4. Impact 5. Policy & strategy

Impact: not in a vacuum Contexts to take cognisance of: • Media-politician-public dynamics. •

Impact: not in a vacuum Contexts to take cognisance of: • Media-politician-public dynamics. • Consumers vs citizens issue. • Laws, regulations, codes. • What media you want exposure in: – Public or private or community media. – Broadcast vs print vs web. – Timing: run-up to poll, voting day.

Making impact 1: • Enthusiastic, one-sided & simplistic treatment in the media = hot

Making impact 1: • Enthusiastic, one-sided & simplistic treatment in the media = hot impact; – Eg. anti-retrovirals • Complexity & debate = slower impact. – Eg. basic income grant • Effect on is cyclical: mobilisation -> action -> maintenance -> fade (as the media intensity declines).

Making impact 2: • Media synergy across platforms works best. • Opportunity: Intermedia agenda-setting

Making impact 2: • Media synergy across platforms works best. • Opportunity: Intermedia agenda-setting power. For example, some titles set “the story” for others.

Specifics of print 1: Bdcast hits hearts, print impacts heads: • Print = the

Specifics of print 1: Bdcast hits hearts, print impacts heads: • Print = the most mental concentration: – followed by TV, then mags, then radio (source: MRA, PMA Project Wonderful) • Print users have “field independence & self-control” • High TV viewers show field dependence and external locus of control (source: Project Mind: PMA)

Specifics of print 2: Readers, distinct from viewers/listeners: • • Like to keep up

Specifics of print 2: Readers, distinct from viewers/listeners: • • Like to keep up to date with new Generally feel they are coping with life Are on the go Are doing well in the new SA Have an active social life Are short of time Command respect from others (Source: Project Mind)

Specifics of print 3: Print is left-brain: • • • Requires logic and engagement

Specifics of print 3: Print is left-brain: • • • Requires logic and engagement Conducive to recall Non-intrusive Receptive mindset due to choice to read Educated people Favours depth (Source: PMA synergy study)

Summing up: • Note the wider context of dyamics, laws • Broadcast media, print

Summing up: • Note the wider context of dyamics, laws • Broadcast media, print media, other? Answer: “Horses for courses”: Also keep in mind: • Most influential media • National vs local media • Language issues

1. Players 2. Elections 3. Multiple media 4. Impact 5. Policy & strategy

1. Players 2. Elections 3. Multiple media 4. Impact 5. Policy & strategy

Your influence: a preview Direct, indirect, longterm, etc. Theories: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5.

Your influence: a preview Direct, indirect, longterm, etc. Theories: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. Audiences make the effects Indirect identity development KAP: knowledge & info levels Stimulus-response effects: emotions Agenda-setting Paradigms and frames

1 a: Audiences are active Uses & gratifications theory: Audiences act on media; they

1 a: Audiences are active Uses & gratifications theory: Audiences act on media; they make the effects. But: § People do change through media exposure, § Messages are not open-ended, § Reinforcement, rather than change, effect. Still: U&G partly valid - audiences are active

1 b. Audiences decode Media effects are decoded by receivers: (a) hegemonic, (b) negotiated,

1 b. Audiences decode Media effects are decoded by receivers: (a) hegemonic, (b) negotiated, (c) oppositional a. “Hegemonic decoding”: Reinforcing influence. You accept the package

1 a. Audiences decode cntd. b. “Negotiated decoding”: You accept only part of the

1 a. Audiences decode cntd. b. “Negotiated decoding”: You accept only part of the package. Question: Why? Answer: You have a mix of situated & mediated meaning-making resources. c. “Oppositional decoding”: You reject package, i. . e “weak effects”. Implies a resistance orientation (eg. to white media, govt media).

 2. Indirect effects: identities 1. Media creates new publics-communities, causes changes in politics,

2. Indirect effects: identities 1. Media creates new publics-communities, causes changes in politics, alters people’s time allocation. 2. A “media dense” environment will have greater effect in this area, and especially on identities – on who you are. 3. Identity is developed through role models, & through the “subjective” positioning needed to participate in a discourse. 4. Much less the case in most of 3 rd World.

3. Knowledge & info effects KAP model • • • Knowledge and information, Attitudes,

3. Knowledge & info effects KAP model • • • Knowledge and information, Attitudes, Practices/behaviour. • Head => heart => hands – • But not so simply linear! Still, knowledge-info are vital elements.

4. S-R: emotional effects Stimulus-response (S-R) theory: • Works on short-term attitudes and opinions

4. S-R: emotional effects Stimulus-response (S-R) theory: • Works on short-term attitudes and opinions • Overly-powerful view. • But true that S-R exists in affective responses: fears, tears, identification, anger, laughter, arousal. Suicides, fashions, riots. • Less-powerful view: S-R is modified by psycho variables, socio variables, 2 step diffusion.

5. Deeper effects • • Works on beliefs, values, norms, worldviews (foundation of attitudes

5. Deeper effects • • Works on beliefs, values, norms, worldviews (foundation of attitudes & opinions) More longterm, & relatively powerful: § § Agenda-setting effects Paradigmatic effects.

5 a. Agenda-setting effects § Defines what is important. § Affects not what you

5 a. Agenda-setting effects § Defines what is important. § Affects not what you think, but what you think about. § Plays to advantage of specific forces.

5 b. Paradigmatic effects 1. How you think about the agenda: 2. i. e.

5 b. Paradigmatic effects 1. How you think about the agenda: 2. i. e. “framing” what has been “primed”. 1. This effect defines reality & norms. 2. Defines what is wise, normal, praiseworthy, acceptable, right. 3. Sets out what is deviant, disgusting, outdated, unacceptable.

Paradigm examples § § Government and business seen as conspiratorial fatcats or polar enemies.

Paradigm examples § § Government and business seen as conspiratorial fatcats or polar enemies. Business is expected to set an example, but keeps aloof from popular concerns. Business is unaccountable, undemocratic. Business is a bottomless pit which should sponsor everything.

Influence: summing up Theories we’ve covered: § Audiences make effects § Identity development §

Influence: summing up Theories we’ve covered: § Audiences make effects § Identity development § KAP: knowledge as foundation § Stimulus-response effects: emotions § Agenda-setting § Paradigms and frames There is value in all of them. Media interacts with people – singly, jointly – in all these ways

Which effect/s resonate with your media exploitaton objectives? § § § Be modest: Audiences

Which effect/s resonate with your media exploitaton objectives? § § § Be modest: Audiences are in charge. Remember general: Identity development. KAP: knowledge as foundation. Stimulus-response: you arouse emotions. Set agendas about what is NB. Position in regard to paradigms, frames and norms.

1. Players 2. Elections 3. Multiple media 4. Impact 5. Policy & strategy

1. Players 2. Elections 3. Multiple media 4. Impact 5. Policy & strategy

Policy for ethical election coverage Remember media is not your slave: • Journalists are

Policy for ethical election coverage Remember media is not your slave: • Journalists are stakeholders in elections, not disinterested or for sale. • An independent media can foster electoral participation and a free and fair poll. • Free media needs to use a poll to enhance its own credibility and democratic value.

From policy to strategy Coverage that you seek will face interference or competition from:

From policy to strategy Coverage that you seek will face interference or competition from: • Governments • Politicians • Party supporters • Police and security • Media bosses

Strategy to implement: How to deal with it: • Stick to straight news values:

Strategy to implement: How to deal with it: • Stick to straight news values: know your message and what stories it makes possible. • Do your research. • Find allies and co-sources. • Be accessible, systematic, persistent, constant. • Stay honest, true, reliable, trustworthy, transparent, ethical. • If need be, lodge complaints or call for reviews.

Monitor your success: Design a list of measurables: • What is your take-up rate?

Monitor your success: Design a list of measurables: • What is your take-up rate? • Are you taken up by other media? , • Quality of coverage re: accuracy, detail? • What is the underlying tone? • Has any one give you feedback on the coverage?

Conclusion

Conclusion

 Summing up What game are you playing in? • A major event with

Summing up What game are you playing in? • A major event with two stakeholders – politicians and people, • An experience with short and longterm impacts. • Remember: Media, public, political people = a dynamic & powerful triangle! that is sometimes not a triangle! • and that works at diff levels, issues, rhythms!

 Understanding Need to grasp the complexities about: • various media platforms, • different

Understanding Need to grasp the complexities about: • various media platforms, • different kinds of effects, • practical strategies. In this way, you can strategise & heighten the impact of your media exploitation.

 Thank you Good luck and think about carefully about your purpose and impact

Thank you Good luck and think about carefully about your purpose and impact of your opportunities Online at: http: //journ. ru. ac. za/staff/guy/ fulltext/opportunity. ppt