Chad Murphy


Assistant Professor
Department of Political Science

 

Refereed
Publications

 

Manuscripts Under Review

Other Publications


Arceneaux, Kevin, Martin Johnson, and Chad Murphy. "Polarized Political Communication, Oppositional Media Hostility, and Selective Exposure." Forthcoming in Journal of Politics.

News consumers often see mainstream media reporting on political issues as contrary to their interests, known as hostile media perception. In the contemporary media environment, viewers may access news sources informed by identifiable political perspectives and are more likely to find news programming either friendly or antagonistic to their views. We identify negative reactions to the latter as oppositional media hostility, anticipated by critics of media fragmentation. However, we argue these effects are moderated by selective exposure. Across six laboratory-based experiments, participants forced to view counter-attitudinal programming find it less informative, more biased, and more hostile than viewers exposed to pro-attitudinal political television. They also judge the media to be less trustworthy in general. Selective exposure does substantially blunt oppositional media hostility. Polarized media can erode confidence in media institutions, but viewer choice limits the potential hazards of partisan news.

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