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Use of print & online news media for local news: A uses & dependency perspective
Unformatted Document Text:  Print & Online News Media Demographic and control variables Previous research has shown that it is necessary to statistically control for demographics when media dependency is examined (e.g., Becker & Whitney, 1980). For example, age and education were necessary controls because they were associated with dependency measures (e.g., higher educated and older audience members were more dependent on newspapers and less on television) as well as with knowledge and trust (e.g., higher educated and older persons were more knowledgeable about local and national government and more trusting of political leaders) (Becker & Whitney, 1980). The demographic variables used in the study included age, gender, education, and income. Three structural anchoring variables such as length of residence, home ownership, and having children younger than 18 at home were included because of their influences on use of local newspapers as identified in previous research (e.g., Fleming, Thorson, & Peng, 2005; Shah, Kwak, & Holbert, 2001; Shah, McLeod, Yoon, 2001). Analytical procedures To statistically control for the effect of demographic and structural anchoring variables, the demographic and control variables were entered first into a hierarchical regression equation (Table 2). This was followed by the measure of “print media dependency.” Altogether, three hierarchical regression equations were computed. The significance of the regression models was assessed by examining the standard incremental F-tests (Cohen & Cohen, 1983). Alpha was set at 0.05 for the incremental F- and t-tests. 13

Authors: Fleming, Kenneth.
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Print & Online News Media
Demographic and control variables
Previous research has shown that it is necessary to statistically control for 
demographics when media dependency is examined (e.g., Becker & Whitney, 1980). For 
example, age and education were necessary controls because they were associated with 
dependency measures (e.g., higher educated and older audience members were more 
dependent on newspapers and less on television) as well as with knowledge and trust 
(e.g., higher educated and older persons were more knowledgeable about local and 
national government and more trusting of political leaders) (Becker & Whitney, 1980).
The demographic variables used in the study included age, gender, education, and 
income. Three structural anchoring variables such as length of residence, home 
ownership, and having children younger than 18 at home were included because of their 
influences on use of local newspapers as identified in previous research (e.g., Fleming, 
Thorson, & Peng, 2005; Shah, Kwak, & Holbert, 2001; Shah, McLeod, Yoon, 2001). 
Analytical procedures
To statistically control for the effect of demographic and structural anchoring 
variables, the demographic and control variables were entered first into a hierarchical 
regression equation (Table 2). This was followed by the measure of “print media 
dependency.” Altogether, three hierarchical regression equations were computed. The 
significance of the regression models was assessed by examining the standard 
incremental F-tests (Cohen & Cohen, 1983). Alpha was set at 0.05 for the incremental F
and t-tests.
13


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