Explaining Campaign News Coverage: How Medium, Time, and Context Explain Variation in the Media Framing of the 2009 European Parliamentary Elections

Andreas R.T. Schuck, Rens Vliegenthart, Hajo G. Boomgaarden, Matthijs Elenbaas, Rachid Azrout, Joost van Spanje, Claes H. de Vreese

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

36 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

It is an open question why news media cover political campaigns the way they do. Framing elections in terms of conflict or strategy or focusing on horse-race framing and the role media and journalists themselves play in elections is commonplace, but this study investigates the factors that explain the variation in campaign news coverage. The context of our study is the 2009 European Parliamentary elections, and we use a cross-national media content analysis (N = 52,009) conducted in all 27 European Union member states. Findings show that time, country, and media characteristics all matter in explaining the way news media frame elections, however, to different extents and with different emphasis. Especially the variation in conflict framing is contingent upon the medium, the electoral system, and public aversion against the EU. We conclude with a discussion of our findings in the light of the ongoing debate on the role and impact of media framing during election campaigns.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)8-28
Number of pages21
JournalJournal of Political Marketing
Volume12
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2013
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • conflict framing
  • election coverage
  • European Parliamentary elections
  • horse-race framing
  • media content analysis
  • media framing
  • metacoverage
  • strategy framing

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