Abstract

http://ssrn.com/abstract=1521231
 
 

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How Partisan is the Press? Multiple Measures of Media Slant


Joshua S. Gans


University of Toronto - Rotman School of Management; NBER

Andrew Leigh


Australian National University - Economics Program, Research School of Social Sciences

December 9, 2009


Abstract:     
We employ several different approaches to estimate the political position of Australian media outlets, relative to federal parliamentarians. First, we use parliamentary mentions to code over 100 public intellectuals on a left-right scale. We then estimate slant by using the number of mentions that each public intellectual receives in each media outlet. Second, we have independent raters separately code front-page election stories and headlines. Third, we tabulate the number of electoral endorsements that newspapers give to each side of politics in federal elections. Overall, we find that the Australian media are quite centrist, with very few outlets being statistically distinguishable from the middle of Australian politics. It is possible that this is due to the lack of competition in the Australian media market. To the extent that we can separate content slant from editorial slant, we find some evidence that editors are more partisan than journalists.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 32

Keywords: media slant, media bias, competition, economics of elections

JEL Classification: D72, L82

working papers series


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Date posted: December 14, 2009 ; Last revised: January 24, 2012

Suggested Citation

Gans, Joshua S. and Leigh, Andrew, How Partisan is the Press? Multiple Measures of Media Slant (December 9, 2009). Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=1521231 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1521231

Contact Information

Joshua S. Gans
University of Toronto - Rotman School of Management ( email )
Canada
HOME PAGE: http://www.joshuagans.com

NBER ( email )
1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States
Andrew Leigh (Contact Author)
Australian National University - Economics Program, Research School of Social Sciences ( email )
HC Coombs Building
Australian National University
Canberra, Australian Capital Territory 0200
Australia
+61261251374 (Phone)
+61261250182 (Fax)
HOME PAGE: http://econrsss.anu.edu.au/~aleigh/
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