From liberal bias to ‘fake news’: Sean Hannity’s election season media-bashing from 2012-2020

Abstract: Fox News navigates Sean Hannity’s complicated status as a member of the news media by describing him as a political commentator and talk show host. His self-assigned role as media critic is of particular interest considering the intensity of his insults toward an ambiguously defined liberal, mainstream media alongside declining media trust among Republicans. This study examines Sean Hannity’s media-bashing around presidential elections from 2012-2020, analyzing his rhetoric as a form of meta-journalistic discourse turned political weapon.

Fuzzy Boundaries: Journalists telling branded stories

Abstract: Brand Studios have become ubiquitous in news outlets across the United States. Situated in news organizations with the attention of audiences that brands hope to reach, these in-house creative studios represent a unique collaboration between advertisers, designers and journalists. This study investigates the practices and professional identities of content creators tasked with “telling a brand’s story.” The goal is to gain insights into the intersection of journalism and advertising from the standpoint of content creators.

Exploring the Photo Bill of Rights

Abstract: In 2020, a group of individuals representing several photographic organizations drafted a new code of photographic ethics, the Photo Bill of Rights. Its goals were to promote a safer, more inclusive industry but many in the photographic community, particularly photojournalism, took exception to some of the language. In particular, an optional section that suggested obtaining consent from those being photographed brought ire from several photojournalists. This panel brings together scholars and photojournalists to discuss the deeper implications, both positive and negative, to the industry from this document and the subsequent response.


The American Founding in Public Memory

Abstract: This presentation concerned the role of journalism in forging early collective memory of the American Revolution. Journalists pre-dated history scholars by decades. Their stories of revolutionary events and people were often used as primary source material for the earliest national and state histories. Later, magazines and newspapers looked back at the nation’s founding with nostalgia and awe, building a national narrative for their expanding audiences during the first half of the 19th century.

Journalistic challenges to a politician’s race-related policies: Rules for interview appropriateness and perceptions of bias and credibility

Abstract: This study uses a randomized posttest-only between-subjects experiment to investigate the communication rules participants perceive after a journalist interviews a politician about race-related policies. The journalist’s adversarialness (no challengesimple challenge, contextualized challenge) was rated for perceived appropriateness. Social dominance orientation (SDO) was used as a moderator of participant perceptions of the journalist and politician. Overall, SDO weighs more heavily than does level of challenge, with high SDO participants perceiving journalistic challenges as less appropriate.

First-generation immigrants’ and sojourners’ believability evaluation of disinformation

Abstract: News consumption enhances the contact experience for first-generation immigrants and sojourners in their acculturation to the host culture. Using acculturation theory, this study explores interdisciplinary concepts related to understanding immigrants’ and sojourners’ believability evaluation of disinformation. By conducting an online experiment, the authors examined the believability of disinformation by asking immigrants and sojourners (N=71) to discern online news stories without disinformation from online stories containing disinformation. The present study found that first-generation immigrants and sojourners with higher levels of perceived English language proficiency, longer length of stays in the U.S., and greater US news consumption are more likely to demonstrate higher news IQ and higher News IQ led to less believability of disinformation. Although news plays a critical role in understanding current events and issues pertinent to individuals’ day-to-day lives, communities, societies, and governments, immigrants and sojourners are largely marginalized populations as news consumers. As foreign-born residents make up close to 14% of the U.S. population, this study will provide meaningful insights.

Global journalism and mass communication education in the digital era

Abstract: Journalism and mass communication education will remain relevant as long as it attracts talented students and provides evidence that its graduates are competitive in the job market. To do that, educators need to understand and embrace the field of mass communication in its new complexity and broaden their curricular options, as students will likely pick those specializations that will help them get a job in the fast-evolving media industry. Journalism schools should also be more active outside the academy, developing media literacy programs for citizens and collaborating with non-academic organizations to combat fake news. Teaching digital technology skills and analyzing how social media have influenced the media industry also are needed. Challenges to journalism education have stimulated agility and growth in the past, so one can hope for the same evolution in the future.

A systematic review of constructive and solutions journalism research

Abstract: Academic activity surrounding constructive and solutions journalism has surged in recent years; thus, it is important to pause and reflect on this growing body of work in order to understand where the field can and should go in the future. We conducted a systematic review of existing literature on solutions and constructive journalism (N=94), in an effort to 1) describe the state of this field by identifying the patterns and trends in the methodological and conceptual approaches, topics, institutions, countries, and practices involved in this research, and 2) illuminate potentially important gaps in the field and suggest recommendations for future research.

The power of political journalists as deception detectors and how politicians reactivate voters’ truth-default

Abstract: Journalists serve as deception detectors for voters. Sometimes politicians refute journalists’ assertions. How do voters discern whom to believe? Based on cognitive sequences posited by truth-default theory (TDT), experiments tested voters’ reactions to alleged deceptiveness in a political news interview. In Study 1 (N = 209) perceptions of a politician being truthfully or falsely accused of deception depended on voters’ projected motive for deception by journalists. In Study 2 (N = 259) voters did not vary in their reactions to a politician whether or not the politician refuted a bogus allegation of evasion—with the exception of voters who perceived very low or high deceptive demeanor from the politician. Consistent with TDT: (a) voters seem to automatically believe journalists, (b) projected motive for deception buffers against being misled, and (c) a politician’s believability is largely based on misleading demeanor cues.