Using the Internet for News and Perceptions of News Organization Bias

By Christie, Thomas B. | Competition Forum, July 1, 2006 | Go to article overview

Using the Internet for News and Perceptions of News Organization Bias


Christie, Thomas B., Competition Forum


EXECUTIVE SUMMERY

As more news consumers throughout the world have access to the Internet, profound changes are occurring in the way people receive their news. Technologies such as the Internet offer the user a competitive alternative to traditional mass media. Lacking the rigid structure of more traditional media, customers are quickly drawn to Internet sources of news that have many characteristics of alternative media. This study explores how perceptions of ideological bias in news differ between Internet news users and non-users. Findings show that user perceptions of ideological bias in news organizations may be a possible catalyst for Internet news use.

Keywords: Internet, mass media, bias, public opinion

INTRODUCTION

As more news consumers throughout the world have access to the Internet, profound changes are occurring in the way people receive their news. Internet news outlets are seen as the most promising segment of the news industry as usage of some traditional news sources decline (Weak Online Economics, 2004). Technologies such as the Internet offer the consumer an alternative to traditional mass media and provide a way to bypass traditional media and sometimes government regulation. As opposed to the operation of more traditional news media, new communication technologies such as the Internet provide more of an unstructured flow of news to their consumers.

Surfing the web for news is affecting the international market for traditional mass media, such as major daily newspapers, broadcast radio and television network news. Use of the Internet for news is drawing people away from these news sources, with fewer people saying that they enjoy traditional news reports (Pew, 2000). Ray Warren, chief executive officer of Carat North America, a major media firm, forecasts a migration of advertising revenue into nontraditional media markets (Consoli, 2006). The migration may be a reflection of how consumers have been moving away from major networks for decades.

In the United States, the "big three" television networks now reach just a third of the overall evening television news audience (down from 72 percent two decades ago), as more and more news consumers use the Internet to satisfy their need for news information (Pew, 1996). Less than 30 percent of Internet users report that they regularly watch a nightly news broadcast from a major network (Pew, 2000).

Using the Internet for news can also have a profound impact in business, development, entertainment, education, and other areas. Even though there is no evidence of a sudden migration to Internet news, and advertising revenues of traditional media are not yet affected by electronic news consumption (Ahlers, 2006), the Internet news market is characterized by low barriers to entry and continues to differentiate itself from traditional media (Chyi & Sylvie, 1998). This study focuses on Internet use as an alternative or supplement to traditional mass media news sources. The impact of such use could be considerable in that, in some cases, users could not only bypass traditional media but circumvent governmental restrictions.

Why are so many consumers turning to the Internet for news? The distrust of and perceptions of bias in traditional media sources may explain why many users are getting their news from the Internet.

New Media Characteristics and Growth of Internet News

New communications technologies in the 1980s influenced freedom of expression, including written and broadcast material and the way news and other information was received by the public (Balle, 1985). Technologies such as the Internet provide news and information people needed to participate in democratic processes. Such use of the Internet to keep up with happenings in the environment may be viewed as a function of the media uses and gratifications approach (Blumer, 1979).

More recently, attention of scholars in technology, communications, and sociology have begun to examine advanced use of alternative media, such as the Internet and its role in the war of ideologies in the post 9/11 political climate. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Using the Internet for News and Perceptions of News Organization Bias
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.