Study: Election coverage has been a downer
November 6, 2012
It’s not just the ads that have trended negative during the run-up to this year’s presidential election. News coverage has too.
From the conventions until the evening of the final presidential debate, both Barack Obama and Mitt Romney have received more negative than positive coverage from the news media, according to a study by the Pew Research Center’s Project for Excellence in Journalism.
From Aug. 27 through Oct. 21, 19 percent of stories about Obama were clearly favorable in tone, while 30 percent were unfavorable and 51 percent mixed, for a total difference of 11 points between unfavorable and favorable stories.
Romney, meanwhile, received 15 percent favorable stories, 38 percent unfavorable and 47 percent mixed, for a difference of 23 points between unfavorable and favorable.
For the study Pew looked at 2,457 stories from 49 media outlets, classifying each as positive, negative or neutral.
The study notes that Obama's coverage in 2008 was nearly twice as positive as it has been this year, 36 percent versus 19 percent. Also, John McCain's coverage in 2008 was much more negative than Romney's has been, 57 percent versus 38 percent.
For more findings from the study click here.
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