Assessing ideological, professional, and structural biases in journalists' coverage of the 2010 BP oil spill

Brendan R. Watson

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations

Abstract

Previous studies based on aggregate data have not found consistent evidence that journalists' personal beliefs and attitudes bias their coverage. This study, however, uses individual-level survey data on Gulf Coast journalists' beliefs and attitudes toward the BP oil spill, matched with a content analysis of respondents' stories about the disaster, and community structure data. The study examines the effect that journalists' perceptions of professional norms and the social and economic contexts of the communities in which they work had on their attitudes toward and coverage of the crisis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)792-810
Number of pages19
JournalJournalism and Mass Communication Quarterly
Volume91
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 2014

Keywords

  • Bias
  • Community structure
  • Oil spill
  • Professional roles

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