Degree Type

Thesis

Date of Award

2012

Degree Name

Master of Science

Department

Greenlee School of Journalism and Communication

First Advisor

Gang Han

Abstract

This study examines how three leading U.S. newspapers, The New York Times, The Washington Post, and USA Today and three mainstream TV networks, ABC, CBS, and NBC frame the attribution of responsibility for three recent food-related salmonella outbreaks. By assessing the way in which mass media assign responsibilities for causing and alleviating the three most recent food-borne diseases, content analysis reveals that the U.S. media tend to assign the responsibility for resolving salmonella outbreak to governments rather than food business, which is distinguished to the previous findings that mass media have the bias to over-attribute epidemics to individuals. The attribution of salmonella responsibility has been framed differently across salmonella cases, but uniformly across media outlets. In addition, a distinction between newspaper and television is detected when discussing the government's responsibility. The implications for crisis communication are also discussed, by taking both causal and treatment responsibility into account to select appropriate communication strategies.

Copyright Owner

Yue Zheng

Language

en

Date Available

2013-05-02

File Format

application/pdf

File Size

61 pages

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