Public opinion polls point to a continuing decline in confidence in the Presidency, court system, Congress, the news media, state government, public education, and other key institutions. Moy and Pfau analyze the reasons for this crisis of confidence, with particular attention to the role of the media.
Moy and Pfau examine the impact of sociodemographic factors, political expertise, and use of communication media on people's perceptions of confidence in democratic institutions. Their conclusions are based on two years of data collection. In three waves between 1995 and 1997, they conducted a series of content analyses of media depictions of democratic institutions in conjunction with general survey data. The result is one of the most comprehensive examinations ever conducted on the influence of the media on public confidence. It will be of great value to scholars, researchers, students, and professionals in government and the media.
About the Author:
PATRICIA MOY is Assistant Professor, School of Communications, University of Washington. Professor Moy has published numerous articles in journals dealing with communication and journalism issues.
MICHAEL PFAU is Professor and Director of Graduate Studies, School of Journalism and Mass Communication, University of Wisconsin-Madison. Professor Pfau has published five earlier books and numerous journal articles dealing with the media and public perceptions.