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Legitimacy Disputes and Social Amplification of Perceived Risk
Unformatted Document Text:  Legitimacy & Social Amplification of Risk Perceptions     12   Research Question 2: How have perceptions of risk for MCD changed in different time periods as a function of government’s risk communication? Research Question 3: How have perceptions of risk for MCD changed over time as legitimacy disputes changed? In answering these research questions, we examined the issue publics’ evaluation of legitimacy of government risk communication and public relations activities and their perceptions of risk of MCD using a content analysis of blog posts during four periods of the issue development. Method To examine different types of legitimacy disputes in blog posts, we analyzed the content of individual blog posts that were randomly selected from Google Blog Search during the three-month-prolonged events that are related to mad cow disease controversy in 2008. Unlike most traditional media that played nothing but partisan media roles during the US beef-import controversy in South Korea, bloggers were different actively raising questions and criticisms on questionable government positions and discussing the legitimacy of government risk communication. An initial search of blog entries from Google Blog Search engine was performed with the keyword terms of “mad cow disease” from April 18 th 2008, to June 30 th 2008. From the relevant results that Google display after excluding repeating and similar results, the researchers have randomly selected 10 % of results. When the selected blog entries were not related to the current issue of MCD controversy, the next or previous one was chosen as a substitute.

Authors: Lim, Joon Soo., Mun, Kwansik. and Yang, Sung-Un.
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Legitimacy & Social Amplification of Risk Perceptions   
 
 
12  
Research Question 2: How have perceptions of risk for MCD changed in different 
time periods as a function of government’s risk communication? 
Research Question 3: How have perceptions of risk for MCD changed over time as 
legitimacy disputes changed?   
In answering these research questions, we examined the issue publics’ evaluation 
of legitimacy of government risk communication and public relations activities and their 
perceptions of risk of MCD using a content analysis of blog posts during four periods of 
the issue development.  
Method 
To examine different types of legitimacy disputes in blog posts, we analyzed the 
content of individual blog posts that were randomly selected from Google Blog Search 
during the three-month-prolonged events that are related to mad cow disease controversy 
in 2008. Unlike most traditional media that played nothing but partisan media roles 
during the US beef-import controversy in South Korea, bloggers were different actively 
raising questions and criticisms on questionable government positions and discussing the 
legitimacy of government risk communication.  
An initial search of blog entries from Google Blog Search engine was performed 
with the keyword terms of “mad cow disease” from April 18
th
 2008, to June 30
th
 2008. 
From the relevant results that Google display after excluding repeating and similar 
results, the researchers have randomly selected 10 % of results. When the selected blog 
entries were not related to the current issue of MCD controversy, the next or previous one 
was chosen as a substitute.  


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