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Valenced news frames and public support for the EU
Unformatted Document Text:  ENDNOTES 1 We would like to acknowledge that the judgement whether a frame is inherently positive or negative depends largely on the perspective. We merely imply that the frame has such elements and acknowledge that there might not be consensus with respect to for whom the information is positive or negative per se. 2 The summit of the European Council in Nice in December 2000 under French EU presidency was held with the overall goal to set the first steps towards the enlargement of the EU with Middle- and Eastern Europe. Twelve states (Poland, Hungary, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Slovenia, Estonia, Lithuania, Latvia, Bulgaria, Romania, Cyprus, and Malta) seek membership in the EU, with first applicants expected to enter the Union in 2004. The Treaty of Nice was proposed at the summit, dealing with necessary institutional and structural changes to prepare the EU for an increased number of member states. Eventually, after controversial discussion, present member states agreed upon the new treaty, hereby introducing a new system of distribution of votes in the Council of Ministers, an agreement on the composition of the Commission after enlargement, and a partial ban of the veto right for certain policy issues, all necessary preliminary steps towards an enlargement of the Union. 3 The following news stories were analysed: 78 from the Dutch newspapers (de Volkskrant n= 31; Telegraaf n= 47), 74 from German newspapers (Süddeutsche Zeitung n=28; Bild n=46), and 41 from British newspapers (The Times n=29; The Sun n=12). 177 television news stories from Dutch newscasts (NOS n=86; RTL4 n=91), 203 from German newscasts (ARD n=106; RTL n=97), and 143 from British newscasts (BBC n=78; ITV n=65) were included. 4 Stories explicitly had to contain the words ‘European Union (EU), European Commission, European Parliament, European Council or European Court of Justice’ in order to be considered relevant. 5 Articles between 10 and 35 lines were categorized as short, articles between 36 and 70 as medium, and articles with more than 71 lines as long. 6 The items identifying the frames were specifically (a) for the economic consequences frame: (1) Does the story mention economic, financial, monetary costs or benefits? (2) Is there a reference to economic consequences of pursuing or not pursuing a course of action? (3) Is there a mention of financial losses or gains now and in the future? (4) Are economical costs and benefits portrayed as direct consequences of enlargement procedure? (b) for the political-institutional consequences frame: (1) Are EU institutions mentioned with respect to their task within the enlargement procedure? (2) Is the story mainly about institutional or structural transformations within the EU? (3) Does the story mention political developments or institutional changes within the EU? (4) Are these political/institutional developments and changes portrayed as direct consequences of the enlargement procedure? and (c) for the social-cultural consequences frame: (1) Does the story mention cultural and social changes and development? (2) Does the story mention effects on social or cultural groups? (3) Are possible changes in the composition of social or cultural groups mentioned? (4) Are these social/cultural developments and changes portrayed as direct consequences of the enlargement procedure? 7 Participants first completed a study of computer-mediated group communication which was, topically, unrelated to the current study. 8 Utilizing original, un-manipulated news stories has inherent methodological problems. Nevertheless, as will be argued below, these stories represent a valid operationalization of the experimental stimuli. Due to the time gap between the original broadcast and the experiment, and because of technical considerations, it was decided not to embed the stories into a complete news broadcast. 9 One of the aims of the Dutch government for example was to gain more influence within the EU by means of increasing voting power in the Council, especially compared to other smaller

Authors: De Vreese, Claes. and Boomgaarden, Hajo.
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ENDNOTES
1
We would like to acknowledge that the judgement whether a frame is inherently positive or
negative depends largely on the perspective. We merely imply that the frame has such
elements and acknowledge that there might not be consensus with respect to for whom the
information is positive or negative per se.
2
The summit of the European Council in Nice in December 2000 under French EU
presidency was held with the overall goal to set the first steps towards the enlargement of the
EU with Middle- and Eastern Europe. Twelve states (Poland, Hungary, Czech Republic,
Slovakia, Slovenia, Estonia, Lithuania, Latvia, Bulgaria, Romania, Cyprus, and Malta) seek
membership in the EU, with first applicants expected to enter the Union in 2004. The Treaty of
Nice was proposed at the summit, dealing with necessary institutional and structural changes
to prepare the EU for an increased number of member states. Eventually, after controversial
discussion, present member states agreed upon the new treaty, hereby introducing a new
system of distribution of votes in the Council of Ministers, an agreement on the composition of
the Commission after enlargement, and a partial ban of the veto right for certain policy issues,
all necessary preliminary steps towards an enlargement of the Union.
3
The following news stories were analysed: 78 from the Dutch newspapers (de Volkskrant n=
31; Telegraaf n= 47), 74 from German newspapers (Süddeutsche Zeitung n=28; Bild n=46),
and 41 from British newspapers (The Times n=29; The Sun n=12). 177 television news
stories from Dutch newscasts (NOS n=86; RTL4 n=91), 203 from German newscasts (ARD
n=106; RTL n=97), and 143 from British newscasts (BBC n=78; ITV n=65) were included.
4
Stories explicitly had to contain the words ‘European Union (EU), European Commission,
European Parliament, European Council or European Court of Justice’ in order to be
considered relevant.
5
Articles between 10 and 35 lines were categorized as short, articles between 36 and 70 as
medium, and articles with more than 71 lines as long.
6
The items identifying the frames were specifically (a) for the economic consequences frame:
(1) Does the story mention economic, financial, monetary costs or benefits? (2) Is there a
reference to economic consequences of pursuing or not pursuing a course of action? (3) Is
there a mention of financial losses or gains now and in the future? (4) Are economical costs
and benefits portrayed as direct consequences of enlargement procedure? (b) for the
political-institutional consequences frame: (1) Are EU institutions mentioned with respect to
their task within the enlargement procedure? (2) Is the story mainly about institutional or
structural transformations within the EU? (3) Does the story mention political developments or
institutional changes within the EU? (4) Are these political/institutional developments and
changes portrayed as direct consequences of the enlargement procedure? and (c) for the
social-cultural consequences frame: (1) Does the story mention cultural and social changes
and development? (2) Does the story mention effects on social or cultural groups? (3) Are
possible changes in the composition of social or cultural groups mentioned? (4) Are these
social/cultural developments and changes portrayed as direct consequences of the
enlargement procedure?
7
Participants first completed a study of computer-mediated group communication which was,
topically, unrelated to the current study.
8
Utilizing original, un-manipulated news stories has inherent methodological problems.
Nevertheless, as will be argued below, these stories represent a valid operationalization of
the experimental stimuli. Due to the time gap between the original broadcast and the
experiment, and because of technical considerations, it was decided not to embed the stories
into a complete news broadcast.
9
One of the aims of the Dutch government for example was to gain more influence within the
EU by means of increasing voting power in the Council, especially compared to other smaller


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