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Selective Exposure and Polarization in the Fragmented Media Environment

Presenters: Magdalena Wojcieszak

Oct 26, 2017
from 12:00 PM to 01:00 PM

Kerr Hall 386

Presenters:  Magdalena Wojcieszak

Title: Selective Exposure and Polarization in the Fragmented Media Environment


Some evidence suggests that communication and media exposure may be potential “threats” to mutually understanding citizenry. People often select media outlets and political content that confirms their prior biases, and – even when exposed to counter-attitudinal arguments – individuals tend to reject and dismiss these arguments and polarize against “the other side” (be it immigrants, supporters of the opposing party, or others).

During this brown-bag, I will mention several recent and planned projects that aim to identify individual, communicative, and contextual factors that could increase social cohesion. Some of the questions I now explore include: What kind of media messages decrease prejudice toward personally disliked groups? Are there ways to encourage people to select online content that challenges what they personally believe and – perhaps more importantly – to consider this content open-mindedly? I will outline several theoretical ideas, present some evidence, and conclude with ideas for new projects and collaborative opportunities. 

Filed under: CMN-Brown Bag, Brown Bag