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Online news and public opinion: how Malaysians respond to news on a state by-election

Mohamed, Shafizan and Syed Abdullah Idid, Syed Arabi and Abdul Manan, Kamaruzzaman (2019) Online news and public opinion: how Malaysians respond to news on a state by-election. Human Communication, 2 (2). pp. 42-57. E-ISSN 2636-9206

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This study articulates the agenda setting function of online news that is shared on Facebook. Many news organizations today have their own Facebook pages in which they publish news stories or links to articles. Having facebook pages allow the newspapers to reach a wider readership as well as promote reader participation through the comments section on Facebook posts. When audience members read and subsequently comment on news articles on Facebook, it becomes possible to identify the effectiveness of a newspaper’s agenda setting function by scrutinising how the readers respond to the issues covered in the newspaper. Content analysis was done on over 450 news articles from four major online newspapers during the Semenyih by-election in Malaysia. The study found that while the online newspapers and the readers do share some issue salience, the relationship is not as simple and direct. The dynamics of Facebook now enable news readers to become more than just receiver of news. Instead, they disrupt the conventional agenda setting function by becoming commenters who influence how other readers receive and contemplate news and issues.

Item Type: Article (Journal)
Additional Information: 5172/77498
Uncontrolled Keywords: By-election, Facebook, Malaysia, Public opinion, Agenda setting, Online Newspapers
Subjects: P Language and Literature > P Philology. Linguistics > P87 Communication. Mass media
Kulliyyahs/Centres/Divisions/Institutes (Can select more than one option. Press CONTROL button): Kulliyyah of Islamic Revealed Knowledge and Human Sciences > Department of Communication
Depositing User: Prof Syed Arabi Idid
Date Deposited: 31 Dec 2019 23:48
Last Modified: 03 Jun 2020 14:25
URI: http://irep.iium.edu.my/id/eprint/77498

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