Michael Short Media Literacy Paper

Michael Short Media Literacy Paper - Michael Short...

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Michael Short 03-11-10 Interracial Dynamics Media Prospectus Associated Press and United Press International: Varying Degrees of Racialization The media covered the Watts Riots of 1965 with focus on racial tension and violence. Media coverage focused on these two aspects as main topics for the majority of the articles covering the riots. In a comparison between two Californian newspapers of different geographical, racial, and political backgrounds, the ways in which the newspapers racialized the events varied. The newspapers compared were the San Francisco Chronicle and the Orange County Register. However, only articles purchased by these newspapers from the Associated Press and the United Press International were analyzed. The research compared the demographics of the newspapers’ audiences and considered whether or not these demographics played a role in deciding which articles the newspaper companies purchased from the AP and UPI. Overall, The Orange County Register tended to racialize the events more negatively and violently compared to the articles of the San Francisco Chronicle through its purchased articles’ use of language, format, and overall content. It is necessary to note that the term “riot” in this paper is being used simply as a commonly used term for the events that occurred in Watts and is not meant to have a demeaning or derogatory connotation with such events, but rather is just being used as a title for point of reference. What is important to remember when looking at and comparing the articles presented by the two newspapers is their audience. Newspaper companies cater the focus
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and overall content of the articles they publish to their audience in order to maximize revenue. According to MuniNetGuide, San Francisco has a much more diverse population including a much larger African American population. Along with this San Francisco has a much less average income than that of the residents in Orange County. When looking at income trends the higher a person’s income the more likely they are to be a conservative white male. Along with this, the Black Panther Party took its roots in San Francisco and had a large following in the area at the time. These demographics help to explain why the San Francisco Chronicle racializes the violence of the Watts Riots in a much less demeaning way towards African Americans. By decoding the headlines of various AP and UPI articles published by each of
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Michael Short Media Literacy Paper - Michael Short...

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