What Drives Demand for Media Slant?

54 Pages Posted: 31 Jul 2017 Last revised: 14 Oct 2018

Marcel Garz

Hamburg Media School

Gaurav Sood

Independent

Daniel F. Stone

Bowdoin College - Department of Economics

Justin Wallace

University of Washington, College of Arts and Sciences, Department of Economics, Students

Date Written: July 5, 2018

Abstract

We conduct within-outlet, within-topic analysis of the relationship between partisan congeniality of news and news demand. We study ``horse race'' news on the 2012 and 2016 US presidential campaigns from six major online outlets, and data from incentivized surveys on news on the winners of presidential campaign debates. We find some evidence of higher demand for more congenial stories (within-outlet-topic), and some evidence of higher demand for more \emph{uncongenial} stories. We argue the former evidence is most consistent with psychological theories of demand for slant, and the latter is most consistent with the trust theory. We also obtain evidence of systematically congenial outlet-level horse race slant, arguably consistent with both the psychology and trust theories, but inconsistent with the instrumental value theory.

Keywords: Media Bias, Media Slant, Horse Race News, Presidential Debate News, Confirmation Bias, Cognitive Dissonance, Polarization

JEL Classification: D72, D83

Suggested Citation

Garz, Marcel and Sood, Gaurav and Stone, Daniel F. and Wallace, Justin, What Drives Demand for Media Slant? (July 5, 2018). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3009791 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3009791

Marcel Garz

Hamburg Media School ( email )

Hamburg Media School
Finkenau 35
Hamburg, Hamburg 22081
Germany

Gaurav Sood

Independent ( email )

No Address Available

Daniel F. Stone (Contact Author)

Bowdoin College - Department of Economics ( email )

Brunswick, ME 04011
United States
6463387833 (Phone)

Justin Wallace

University of Washington, College of Arts and Sciences, Department of Economics, Students ( email )

Box 353330
Seattle, WA 98195-3330
United States

Register to save articles to
your library

Register

Paper statistics

Downloads
89
rank
266,634
Abstract Views
614
PlumX