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Framing in the ‘New Media Environment’: Fox News Channel (FNC) Covers the Bristol Palin Pregnancy
Unformatted Document Text:  a celebration of pro-life would have resulted from and contributed directly back to the audience’s balkanization. Because this ideological discussion happened in such an ideologically sequestered context, the ‘local’ nature of the de-centered media ensured that such beliefs and residual contradictions would not be challenged by or even have to compete with the more pluralistic debate of a centered media ritual. Just as the legitimate challenge by Kondracke–the token liberal in this event–against the ‘abstinence only’ education policy got shouted down on the air, no challenge to the de facto acceptance of Bristol Palin’s teen pregnancy would be brooked, either (Fox, 2008). Apart from the moment of this framing maneuver, which at once employed and reified the power produced by FNC’s balkanization, the on-air talents covering the Republican convention pursued the longer-lived, polarizing frame of the ‘liberal’ mainstream media. Unlike the more tactical re-framing of Palin’s status, this frame served to define the relationship between FNC and its audience, on the one hand, and their opposition to the mainstream, on the other hand (Jamieson and Cappella, 2008). One media effect of such polarization is that it sustains the ‘myth of the mediated center’ by promoting an in-group definition to assure audience members that FNC remains a source of ‘Truth’ (Couldry, 2003a; Jamieson and Cappella, 2008). Although such mythical status applies to

Authors: Durham, Frank.
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a celebration of pro-life would have resulted from and contributed directly back to the audience’s 
Because this ideological discussion happened in such an ideologically sequestered 
context, the ‘local’ nature of the de-centered media ensured that such beliefs and residual 
contradictions would not be challenged by or even have to compete with the more pluralistic 
debate of a centered media ritual. Just as the legitimate challenge by Kondracke–the token liberal 
in this event–against the ‘abstinence only’ education policy got shouted down on the air, no 
challenge to the de facto acceptance of Bristol Palin’s teen pregnancy would be brooked, either 
(Fox, 2008). 
Apart from the moment of this framing maneuver, which at once employed and reified 
the power produced by FNC’s balkanization, the on-air talents covering the Republican 
convention pursued the longer-lived, polarizing frame of the ‘liberal’ mainstream media. Unlike 
the more tactical re-framing of Palin’s status, this frame served to define the relationship between 
FNC and its audience, on the one hand, and their opposition to the mainstream, on the other hand 
(Jamieson and Cappella, 2008). 
One media effect of such polarization is that it sustains the ‘myth of the mediated center’ 
by promoting an in-group definition to assure audience members that FNC remains a source of 
‘Truth’ (Couldry, 2003a; Jamieson and Cappella, 2008). Although such mythical status applies to 

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