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Candidates on the Stump Online: Framing the Internet in the Early Stages of the 2004 Presidential Election
Unformatted Document Text:  Candidates on the Stump Online 12 The sources featured in the articles and broadcasts were almost always limited to the journalists reporting the story. Of the 180 articles, 166 (92.2%) cited their author or a fellow journalist. Individual supporters were quoted in 14 (7.8%) articles. Campaign staffers received more play than the candidates for whom they worked—12 (6.7%) versus 7 (3.9%) mentions respectively. Political pundits and representatives from organizations or interest groups were each quoted in 6 (3.3%) articles. Spokespersons for political parties appeared as sources in only 2 (1.1%) articles. The average number of sources quoted in the sample articles was 1.9 (s.d. = .48). Almost all of the articles framed Internet campaigning as a savvy strategy or insurgent/hype (see Table 4). Almost none framed it as building community or empowerment. The majority of coverage focused on the effect of Internet campaigning on candidates’ chances of winning and paid little attention to how citizens and grassroots groups were reacting to the techniques and using the offerings. Table 3 about here Coverage by Medium The second research question focused on how the coverage differed across the three mediums—newspaper, newsmagazine, and television. During the sample period, USA Today ran 84 (46.7%) articles reporting on Internet campaigning. The three network evening newscasts aired 59 (32.7%) stories, and the two newsmagazines published 37 (20.6%) articles. Not surprisingly, the newsmagazine articles were longer than those in newspaper articles and television stories. The mean number of words for newsmagazine articles was 1,278.08 (s.d. =

Authors: Roberts Frith, Cary.
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Candidates on the Stump Online 12
The sources featured in the articles and broadcasts were almost always limited to the
journalists reporting the story. Of the 180 articles, 166 (92.2%) cited their author or a fellow
journalist. Individual supporters were quoted in 14 (7.8%) articles. Campaign staffers received
more play than the candidates for whom they worked—12 (6.7%) versus 7 (3.9%) mentions
respectively. Political pundits and representatives from organizations or interest groups were
each quoted in 6 (3.3%) articles. Spokespersons for political parties appeared as sources in only
2 (1.1%) articles. The average number of sources quoted in the sample articles was 1.9 (s.d. =
.48).
Almost all of the articles framed Internet campaigning as a savvy strategy or
insurgent/hype (see Table 4). Almost none framed it as building community or empowerment.
The majority of coverage focused on the effect of Internet campaigning on candidates’ chances
of winning and paid little attention to how citizens and grassroots groups were reacting to the
techniques and using the offerings.
Table 3 about here
Coverage by Medium
The second research question focused on how the coverage differed across the three
mediums—newspaper, newsmagazine, and television. During the sample period, USA Today ran
84 (46.7%) articles reporting on Internet campaigning. The three network evening newscasts
aired 59 (32.7%) stories, and the two newsmagazines published 37 (20.6%) articles. Not
surprisingly, the newsmagazine articles were longer than those in newspaper articles and
television stories. The mean number of words for newsmagazine articles was 1,278.08 (s.d. =


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