Red, Blue, and the Flu: Media Self-Selection and Partisan Gaps in Swine Flu Vaccinations
AbstractThis study assesses the relationship between political partisanship and attitudes and behavior with respect to the Swine Flu crisis of 2009 in general, and the U.S. mass vaccination program in particular. I argue that even seemingly non-partisan political issues like public health are increasingly characterized by partisan polarization in public attitudes, and that such polarization is in part attributable, at least in part, to the breakdown of the information commons that characterized the American mass media from roughly the 1950s until the early 1990s. In its place has arisen an increasingly fragmented and niche-oriented media marketplace in which individuals are better able to limit their information exposure to attitudes and opinions that reinforce, rather than challenge, their preexisting beliefs. I test my argument against a variety of data sources, including opinion surveys and state level Swine Flu vaccination rate data.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Harvard Kennedy School of Government in its series Scholarly Articles with number 4696292.
Date of creation: 2011
Date of revision:
Publication status: Published in HKS Faculty Research Working Paper Series
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Matthew Gentzkow & Jesse M. Shapiro, 2010. "Ideological Segregation Online and Offline," NBER Working Papers 15916, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- DellaVigna, Stefano & Kaplan, Ethan, 2006.
"The Fox News Effect: Media Bias and Voting,"
748, Stockholm University, Institute for International Economic Studies.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Reinhard Engels).
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.