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The National Interest on Internet News Sites

The National Interest on Internet News Sites

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The National Interest on Internet News Sites

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  1. The National Interest onInternet News Sites Bella Mody University of Colorado Boulder Linda Hofschire Independent Researcher Presented at ICA May 09 Chicago Updated June 29 2009

  2. High expectations of the internet-to provide a global public sphere, -to emphasize our common humanity rather than parochial national interests-to promote cosmopolitanism

  3. Hypothesis: news designed for extra-national audiences will cover civil war and humanitarian crises more comprehensively in terms of causes and remedies

  4. Comprehensive coverageindex operationally defined to include Time of coverage Article type: coverage through features, backgrounders, opinion columns in addition to hard news Quotes from non-traditional sources like rebels, non-governmental orgs, human rights monitors and refugees in addition to government officials

  5. Data from a 10-news org comparison of scores on an 11-item Comprehensive Coverage Index of the Darfur Sudan civil war over 26 months (Jan 03-Feb 05)

  6. Coverage on each of 11 dimensions was ranked from 10=high to 1=low • Rank values across the 11 indicators were summed and divided by 110

  7. Comprehensive coverage scores: national print dailies Wash Post 73/110 NY Times 70/110 Guardian UK 65/110 Le Monde 64/110 Al Ahram 49/110 People’s Daily 44/110 Weighted mean score for national print dailies: 64.80 Comprehensive coverage scores for extra-national online news media • Mail and Guardian Online S Africa 68/110 BBC.CO.UK 66/110 English.Al Jazeera.Net 59/110 China Daily 53/110 Weighted mean score for extra-nationally focused online news: 63.65

  8. A priori expectations of influences on comprehensiveness of foreign coverage: -Current national interest in country being covered -Historical geopolitical location based on shared experience of Western colonization in the 19th-20th century -Ownership of media organization (any state role?) -Extra national versus national geopolitical readership

  9. Comprehensive Coverage scores for all 10 news organizations based on National Interest in Sudan: Low National Interest in Sudan: UK, France, US, South Africa: 68.11 Medium-High National Interest in Sudan: Qatar, Egypt, China: 52.42 t(958)=57.02, p<.001

  10. Comprehensive Coverage scores for all 10 news organizations based on shared historical experience of 19-20th century colonization by West: No shared experience of 19th-20th century colonization by West: UK, France coverage : 68.13 Shared historical experience of shared colonization by West coverage: 58.61 t(958)=23.76, p<.001

  11. Comprehensive Coverage scores for all 10 news organizations based on state ownership of news org: No state ownership: NYT, WP, Le Monde, M+Guardian South Africa : 68.78 State ownership: al Ahram, BBC.CO.UK, China Daily, Al Jazeera : 58.19 t(958)=28.79, p<.001

  12. Extra-national press weighted mean score on compreh coverage of humanitarian conflict: 63.65 National press weighted mean score on compreh coverage of humanitarian conflict: 64.80 t(958)=2.32, p<.05

  13. Relative impact of predictors on the comprehensiveness of coverage of this one civil war and humanitarian conflict: Betas sig at p<.001 • Private ownership 0.44 • No Western colonization 0.37 • Low national interest in Sudan 0.28 • Extra-national geo-political 0.20 market

  14. Findings - Coverage of humanitarian news varies due to longstanding political and eco reasons mentioned frequently in the literature • The state in which the news org is located continues to be a major influence - The media platform (viz. the Internet) is one of many influences

  15. How should “global” media be defined? -Based on audience? medium? Universal access? -Based on political economy questions related to the news org owner and owner interests, e.g. the BBC vs. Al-Jazeera? • Should predictions about coverage by “global” news orgs vary based on the nature of their claim to globalness?