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Mass Media

Paid media, such as TV, radio, and newspaper, ads that urge voter turnout have a very small capacity to mobilize voters, i.e. 1-2% -- can’t rule out the possibility that the effects are zero


Televised public service announcements have disappointing effects


Mass media represents a potentially cost-effective means of raising turnout due to vast reach, despite small effect ( May not induce many people, but cost/vote low.)

  • TV costs are about $15/ vote
  • Radio is $7/vote
  • Newspaper is $5/ vote


Lowest mass media costs can be found in regions that are less affluent. (Less sales advertising creates opportunity for political advertising)


Most media research relies on surveys, which is flawed.

  • Viewing patterns are requested in vague terms, which introduce errors.
  • Media consumption reflects personal tastes and thus creates cause and effect issue.


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