Read the Encyclopedia of Communication Theory’s explanation of Agenda-setting Theory and listen to its founder explain its principles:
Watch this video for examples of the theory:
Then, watch this dramatization of how the theory can work:
Finally, you might visit the websites for the White House and the White House Correspondents Association.
Having access to the president and his cabinet members has been a key part of a free press in America. The White House Correspondents Association began as a loose group of reporters who fought to have daily access to the White House.
News media outlets and reporters have not always had the best relationship with various administrations. Indeed, the relationship still is tense: the Obama administration has taken a great deal of flack in recent months about excluding reporters or media outlets from briefings or trips, and for editing the “pool reports” – the notes that reporters share with each other – about the First Family’s activities. And as pages 250–259 in Chapter 18 of the Handbook of Journalism Studies point out, the news media increasingly are being bypassed as decision makers and power brokers seek to speak directly to particular segments of the population.
Some questions to think about:
Before you tackle these questions, please make sure you have read the materials at all of the links in this discussion prompt. Then, these questions in a cogent response:
1. How do you think that Web 2.0 will change the way current and future presidents seek to influence the American public?
2. What do you think is the best way to ensure that Federal agencies do not disseminate propaganda to domestic audiences?
3. What should the role of White House Correspondents be in covering the President and the White House? What challenges do they have in remaining objective with the President and his administration?
4. What guidelines would you offer to media consumers to help them evaluate the messages they receive about government programs