Javnost - The Public, Vol. 14 - 2007, No. 2
This paper approaches the building of an integrative conceptual model of the study of public opinion and popular sentiments by applying the theory of public opinion developed by Ferdinand Tönnies to the general field of public opinion research and theory. Tönnies’ theoretical foundations are systematised and extended to suggest a framework that could be useful for integrating the field and improving consistency as well as efficiency of opinion research. The cornerstones of this model are two forms of social will: popular sentiment and opinion of the public. The paper discusses the derivation of these dimensions, their specification, and several features.
In September 2005 the Danish newspaper Jyllands-Posten published 12 cartoons that poked fun at Islam. In January 2006 this resulted in an explosion of angry mass protest in Muslim countries. This was part of a politicalcultural confrontation in which the press became involved when they decided to publish the cartoons in defence of freedom of speech. This case study throws some light on the elements which gave rise to the controversy and have inspired similar incidents. The global dimension of the media action together with the growth of cultural co-existence means that this study may be of some help in understanding journalistic practice.
Gate-keeping in the new media age: A case study of the selection of textmessages in a current affairs programme
A key trend in current broadcasting is the combination of traditional TV-formats and digital media. In these multiplatform formats, the Internet and the mobile phone in particular are used as return channels in order to stimulate audience activity. Studies of multi-platform formats have mainly analysed audience participation with cumulative influence on the production, such as Big Brother and Pop Idol. In this article, I investigate a format that combines traditional journalism with elements of audience participation. In the current aff airs format SevenThirty, the audience is invited to respond to issues raised in the programme by sending text-messages via the mobile telephone (SMS). The viewers are not guaranteed to get their messages aired; the moderator selects and rejects messages according to the editorial policy, and thus functions as a classic “gatekeeper”. The study compares the text-messages received by the TV-station with the ones transmitted onscreen. The main research questions are: What are the main confl icts between journalistic norms of objectivity and participatory ideals of access? How are these confl icts handled in the production? What characterises the “gatekeeper” in the new media age? One of the basic findings is that “gatekeepers” not only select and edit, but also fabricate text messages.
In this article we investigate the online communication about Europe as present on websites produced by French, British and Dutch political parties during the 2004 European Parliament (EP) election campaign. It is through the manner in which Europe is presented within this online communication that political parties’ view on what constitutes “Europe” becomes manifest. It is argued that the existence of common understandings of what constitutes “Europe” being shared among political parties from various EU member states can be considered an indicator of Europeanisation of political communication and, subsequently, of a European public sphere. This article elaborates on the national and cross-national diff erences and similarities regarding the manner in which Europe is presented in the content of political party websites. We report on two presentations: (1) the focus (European versus national) in which the issue domains interests, identity and values are mentioned in parties’ online communication about Europe, and (2) the attitude towards Europe (positive versus negative) expressed by these parties. Cross-national similarities in parties’ online communication about Europe were observed among the liberal parties, the sovereign and extreme right-wing parties, and the green parties. More diversity was observed among the social democratic parties and centre-right parties.
Reviewed books:<br><br> Andrew Chadwick. 2006. Internet Politics. States, Citizens and New Communication Technologies. New York: Oxford University Press, 384 pp, $41.25, ISBN-10: 0195177738.<br><br> Lincoln Dahlberg and Eugenia Siapera, eds. 2007. Radical Democracy and the Internet. New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 272 pp, $85,–, ISBN-10: 0230007201.<br><br> Peter Dahlgren, ed. 2007. Young Citizens and New Media: Learning for Democratic Participation. New York: Routledge, 320 pp, $120,–, ISBN-10: 0415395992.<br><br> Michael Keren. 2006. Blogosphere. The New Political Arena. Lanham: Lexington Books, 165 pp, $26.95, ISBN-10: 073911672X.<br><br> Brian Loader, ed. 2007. Young Citizens in the Digital Age. Political Engagement, Young People and New Media. London: Routledge, 216 pp, $41.85, ISBN-10: 0415409136.