Intergroup Media Selection: Media Features and Audience's Social Identity Motivations and Gratifications
AdvisorHarwood, Jake T.
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PublisherThe University of Arizona.
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AbstractPast research has suggested that exposure to media in which the audience can observe positive interactions between a member or their group and a member of an outgroup can have a positive impact on audience attitudes towards the outgroup. This dissertation examines the reasons why individuals might voluntarily watch these types of intergroup media. Participants were exposed to two television show proposals in which three media features were experimentally manipulated: The social comparison between groups, the stereotypicality of outgroup character, and the presence of intergroup romance. The findings indicate that individuals were motivated to consume media that reduced uncertainty about other groups and increased the perceived status of their own. In addition, although not consistent across the two proposed shows, several of the manipulated media features were found to interact and/or relate indirectly to the attractiveness of the television show through the gratification of these motivations. The theoretical relevance and applicability of these findings is discussed.
Degree ProgramGraduate College