Just back from this weekend’s Socrates Society gathering at the Aspen Institute, where I had the pleasure of participating in former FCC Chairman, and fellow Crown Fellow, Michael K. Powell’s seminar “Media and our Values.” It was an enlightening experience, and challenged most of my assumptions about how I think about media.
During the seminar, I mentioned a study I recalled which purported to find striking differences amongst the factual recall of the viewers of different news networks. I had a bit of a rough time with the facts (or, more accuratley, my memory of the facts), until I found the study. Here it is:
The study was published in Political Science Quarterly by PIPA (the Program on International Policy Attitudes) and performed by Knowledge Networks. It has some profound implications for the way we all think about our news media.
First, it explains at great length how Americans allowed themselves to be grossly misinformed about the Iraq War. This is old news (but perhaps wasn’t at the time of the study).
However, the more troubling and most striking numbers in the study are in a table (Table 4, on page 582):
The numbers are qualitatively consistent with what I said in seminar, but not quantitatively: NPR/PBS listeners were 77% likely not to have misperceptions; Fox viewers were 20% (I had quoted 63% and 37%, respectively). Also, to Morgan