Annenberg School for Communication
University of Pennsylvania
Routine Media Exposure
How does media coverage affect young people's decision to smoke?
In today’s complex media environment, does media coverage influence youth and young adults’ (YYA) tobacco use and intentions? Leveraging a census of mass media and social media content and a matched-in-time nationally representative survey (N = 11,847), we ask whether over time variation in tobacco media coverage predicts daily YYA cigarette smoking intentions. Opportunities for exposure to anti-tobacco content in the past week predicted lower intentions to smoke (Odds ratio [OR] = 0.95, p < .05, 95% confidence interval [CI] = 0.91–1.00). The effect was stronger among current smokers than among nonsmokers (interaction OR = 0.88, p < .05, 95% CI = 0.77–1.00). These findings support specific effects of anti-tobacco media coverage and illustrate a productive general approach to conceptualizing and assessing effects in the complex media environment.
How do politicians discuss issues relevant to population health in political advertising?
Political discourse is one way that policymakers and candidates for public office discuss societal problems, propose solutions, and articulate actionable policies that might improve population health. Yet we know little about how politicians define and discuss issues relevant to population health in their major source of electoral communication, campaign advertisements. This study examined the prevalence of references to population health–relevant issues conveyed in campaign advertising for political office at all levels of government in the United States in 2011-2012 and 2015-2016.