Keren Henderson, associate professor of broadcast and digital journalism, and Makana Chock, associate professor of communications, co-authored the paper, “Could cutting costs mean changing minds? Effects of local television news work routines on viewer attention, information-processing, and perceptions of story importance.” The paper was published in the journal Journalism.
Market-driven changes to local television news content can come with consequences to viewers in terms of understanding, remembering and subsequently deliberating about news information. This study focuses on the effects of television news packages on viewers with the understanding that ‘high-effort’ storytelling is not supported uniformly across stations. Using an experiment, this study compares the effects of high- and low-effort storytelling on viewers’ memories for story facts, reported emotional states and perceptions of the importance of stories to determine whether cost-cutting measures will have important consequences for the half of US adults who report relying regularly on local television news for their civic information and for the multi-platform audiences whose preferred content originates from traditional television news work routines.