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John Horne

The tendency in discussions of media consumption in the past decade has been to move away from political economy or the “production of consumption” perspective; it has been accompanied by a growing interest in the active audience, symbolic culture, and textual analysis. Though sport and the mass media are a popular research topic in English-language publications, the major focus has been on a narrow range of advanced capitalist economies. This article on the relationship between the mass media and sport in Japan takes issue with both these emphases and contributes to on-going debates about sport, the media, and the commodification of popular culture. First, it provides a sketch of episodes in the development of the mass media in Japan—especially the newspaper press, radio, and television—in conjunction with that of sport. The focal point is the involvement of business corporations in the development of relations between professional sport and the mass media and the underlying commercial logic that steers that development. Second, by focusing on Japanese examples, the article provides additional empirical data so that similarities and contrasts can be drawn among existing accounts of the development of mediasport in advanced capitalist countries. In particular, it is argued that much of the writing about sport and the mass media has been derived from examination of “Anglo-American” experiences. Attention to media and sport in Japan, both as an economic commodity and as a vehicle for the creation of meaningful discourse about national identity, raises questions about debates concerning sport, media, and globalization.

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Tina Lankford, Jana Wallace, David Brown, Jesus Soares, Jacqueline N. Epping and Fred Fridinger

Background:

Mass media campaigns are a necessary tool for public health practitioners to reach large populations and promote healthy behaviors. Most health scholars have concluded that mass media can significantly influence the health behaviors of populations; however the effects of such campaigns are typically modest and may require significant resources. A recent Community Preventive Services Task Force review on stand-alone mass media campaigns concluded there was insufficient evidence to determine their effectiveness in increasing physical activity, partly due to mixed methods and modest and inconsistent effects on levels of physical activity.

Methods:

A secondary analysis was performed on the campaigns evaluated in the Task Force review to determine use of campaign-building principles, channels, and levels of awareness and their impact on campaign outcomes. Each study was analyzed by 2 reviewers for inclusion of campaign building principles.

Results:

Campaigns that included 5 or more campaign principles were more likely to be successful in achieving physical activity outcomes.

Conclusion:

Campaign success is more likely if the campaign building principles (formative research, audience segmentation, message design, channel placement, process evaluation, and theory-based) are used as part of campaign design and planning.

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Emily Knox, Stuart Biddle, Dale W. Esliger, Joe Piggin and Lauren Sherar

Background:

Mass media campaigns are an important tool for promoting health-related physical activity. The relevance of sedentary behavior to public health has propelled it to feature prominently in health campaigns across the world. This study explored the use of messages regarding sedentary behavior in health campaigns within the context of current debates surrounding the association between sedentary behavior and health, and messaging strategies to promote moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA).

Methods:

A web-based search of major campaigns in the United Kingdom, United States, Canada, and Australia was performed to identify the main campaign from each country. A directed content analysis was then conducted to analyze the inclusion of messages regarding sedentary behavior in health campaigns and to elucidate key themes. Important areas for future research were illustrated.

Results:

Four key themes from the campaigns emerged: clinging to sedentary behavior guidelines, advocating reducing sedentary behavior as a first step on the activity continuum and the importance of light activity, confusing the promotion of MVPA, and the demonization of sedentary behavior.

Conclusions:

Strategies for managing sedentary behavior as an additional complicating factor in health promotion are urgently required. Lessons learned from previous health communication campaigns should stimulate research to inform future messaging strategies.

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Pazit Levinger and Keith D. Hill

commuting and nonessential activities may also have enabled people to engage in more physical activities at home or outdoors. Mass media campaigns can be used to communicate public health messages at the population level and have been shown previously to reduce sedentary behavior and influence sexual

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Adrian Bauman and Josephine Chau

Background:

This paper reviewed a) mass media campaigns and b) ‘new media’ interventions to promote physical activity. They are different kinds of interventions, with campaigns being mass-reach communications efforts to increase population awareness of physical activity. ‘New media’ interventions assess the impact of web-based, internet, other ’new media’ and e-mail-delivered interventions to increase physical activity.

Methods:

Previous reviews of mass media campaigns and ‘new media’ interventions were assessed, and more recent peer-reviewed publications identified using routine electronic databases. For each area, a framework for interventions was described, and evidence for the effectiveness of these interventions, the main outcomes of interest, and methodological strengths and weaknesses were identified.

Key recommendations:

For mass media campaigns, key recommendations were to use consistent and well-branded messages, and for campaigns to be integrated across local, State and national levels, with sufficient resources to purchase sufficient media. Mass media campaigns should be subject to rigorous formative, process and impact evaluation. For ‘new media’ interventions, there is clear evidence of effectiveness, but efforts should be made to increase the reach and generalizability of these interventions. They should be provided as a low cost component of integrated communitywide physical activity programs.

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Lira Yun, Elaine M. Ori, Younghan Lee, Allison Sivak and Tanya R. Berry

Background:

Mass media campaign is an integral tool to influence physical activity participant behaviors. The purpose of the systematic review was to identify the effectiveness of mass media campaigns in promoting physical activity.

Methods:

Literature update from January 2010 to September 2016 was conducted in 13 databases. Full text articles of 128 were screened, and 23 articles (18 campaigns) were selected from the initial 1692 articles.

Results:

All campaigns involved mass media advertisements to promote physical activity to general individuals (n = 2), adults (8), children (4), older adults (2), and parents of children (n = 2). The campaign evaluation designs included clustered RCT (2), cohort (3), quasi-experimental (9), and cross-sectional (9). Eight articles demonstrated significant campaign impact on proximal, 6 on intermediate, 5 on distal outcomes, and 6 on distal change based on either proximal or intermediate outcome.

Conclusion:

The current review assessed the outcome evaluation of mass media physical activity campaigns that varied in their respective scope, target population and outcomes measured to identify individual changes at proximal, intermediate, and distal level. Results from formative and process evaluation as well as dose-response and cost-effective analysis are suggested to provide valuable evidence for campaign stakeholders and planners.

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Bill Reger-Nash, Adrian Bauman, Linda Cooper, Tien Chey, Kenneth J. Simon, Maria Brann and Kevin M. Leyden

Background:

WV Walks replicated the Wheeling Walks community-wide campaign methodology to promote physical activity.

Methods:

A social marketing intervention promoted walking among insufficiently active 40- to 65-year-olds throughout the television media market in north-central West Virginia. The intervention included participatory planning, an 8-week mass media-based campaign, and policy and environmental activities. Pre and post random-digit-dial cohort telephone surveys were conducted at baseline and immediately postcampaign in intervention and comparison regions.

Results:

The campaign resulted in maximal message awareness in north-central WV and demonstrated a significant increase in walking behavior represented by an absolute shift of 12% of the target population from insufficiently active to active (≥30 minutes, 5 days per week), versus the comparison community (adjusted odds ratio 1.82, CI: 1.05−3.17). Policy and environmental changes were also evident.

Conclusions:

This replication study increases our confidence that the initial effects observed in the Wheeling Walks intervention are generalizable to other similar rural communities.

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Ben J. Smith and Catriona M.F. Bonfiglioli

Background:

Advocacy informed by scientific evidence is necessary to influence policy and planning to address physical inactivity. The mass media is a key arena for this advocacy. This study investigated the perceptions and practices of news media professionals reporting physical activity and sedentariness to inform strategic communication about these issues.

Methods:

We interviewed media professionals working for major television, radio, newspaper and online news outlets in Australia. The interviews explored understandings of physical activity and sedentariness, attributions of causality, assignment of responsibility, and factors affecting news reporting on these topics. Data were thematically analyzed using NVivo.

Results:

Physical inactivity was recognized as pervasive and important, but tended to be seen as mundane and not newsworthy. Sedentariness was regarded as more novel than physical activity, and more likely to require organizational and environment action. Respondents identified that presenting these issues in visual and engaging ways was an ongoing challenge.

Conclusions:

Physical activity researchers and advocates need to take account of prevailing news values and media practices to improve engagement with the news media. These include understanding the importance of novelty, narratives, imagery, and practical messages, and how to use these to build support for environmental and policy action.

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Gina Daddario

This article examines television’s portrayal of female athletes during the 1992 winter Games. Although women are depicted in physically challenging events that defy stereotypical notions of femininity, such as mogul skiing, luge, and the biathlon, rhetorical analysis suggests that the sports media reinforce a masculine sports hegemony through strategies of marginalization. These include the application of condescending descriptors, the use of compensatory rhetoric, the construction of female athletes according to an adolescent ideal, and the presentation of female athletes as driven by cooperation rather than competition.