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Violent Media Content: A Cross-Media, Longitundinal Analysis
Unformatted Document Text:  9 26.9% contained violence. The amount of violence in the magazine did not correlate with crime statistics. Finally, Clark and Blankenburg also examined the amount of violence that appeared in the front-page stories of the Atlanta Constitution, the Chicago Tribune, the New York Times, and the San Francisco Chronicle on ten randomly selected dates from the years 1927 to 1968. Of the over 19,000 stories that were coded, 17.6% were found to contain violence at a rate of 2.3 violent items per page. Their analysis suggests that violence has been a stable presence on newspaper front pages over time and is especially present during times of war. In non-war times, Clark and Blankenburg found that violence on the front page was typically associated with local homicide statistics. The Study at Hand Overall, the amount of violence on television has been studied extensively, but that same degree of attention has rarely been applied to and compared to other media. Therefore, there are still important gaps in the literature in the socially significant topic area of violent media content. Only the Clark and Blankenburg (1972) study has made important cross-media comparisons by examining many different types of media content. Yet, this study is now clearly out of date. The present study updates the broad and extensive analysis of Clark and Blankenburg. It also extends that analysis by applying the major advances in the study of violent media content made by the National Television Violence Study to a longitudinal sample that is similar in scope to Clark and Blankenburg’s sweeping data. Though far from an all-inclusive analysis of violence in media and popular culture (no examination of movies, the Internet, or video games, for instance), the analysis in this study of four types of mass media provides a fairly extensive view. Indeed, the sample comprises ten to twenty years of content from

Authors: Scharrer, Erica.
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26.9% contained violence. The amount of violence in the magazine did not correlate with
crime statistics. Finally, Clark and Blankenburg also examined the amount of violence
that appeared in the front-page stories of the Atlanta Constitution, the Chicago Tribune,
the New York Times, and the San Francisco Chronicle on ten randomly selected dates
from the years 1927 to 1968. Of the over 19,000 stories that were coded, 17.6% were
found to contain violence at a rate of 2.3 violent items per page. Their analysis suggests
that violence has been a stable presence on newspaper front pages over time and is
especially present during times of war. In non-war times, Clark and Blankenburg found
that violence on the front page was typically associated with local homicide statistics.
The Study at Hand
Overall, the amount of violence on television has been studied extensively, but
that same degree of attention has rarely been applied to and compared to other media.
Therefore, there are still important gaps in the literature in the socially significant topic
area of violent media content. Only the Clark and Blankenburg (1972) study has made
important cross-media comparisons by examining many different types of media content.
Yet, this study is now clearly out of date. The present study updates the broad and
extensive analysis of Clark and Blankenburg. It also extends that analysis by applying the
major advances in the study of violent media content made by the National Television
Violence Study to a longitudinal sample that is similar in scope to Clark and
Blankenburg’s sweeping data. Though far from an all-inclusive analysis of violence in
media and popular culture (no examination of movies, the Internet, or video games, for
instance), the analysis in this study of four types of mass media provides a fairly
extensive view. Indeed, the sample comprises ten to twenty years of content from


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