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MEDIA BIAS EVIDENT IN DEBATE COVERAGE

 MEDIA BIAS EVIDENT IN DEBATE COVERAGE
 NORWALK, Conn., Nov. 11 /PRNewswire/ -- Complaints of politically


biased media coverage may be justified, according to a non-partisan analysis of major daily newspapers and news services. The appearance of editorial bias in news coverage often appeared in the form of innuendo or subtle references, the study shows.
 News articles biased in favor of President-elect Bill Clinton and Ross Perot numbered greater than those supporting President George Bush. Clinton received 44.8 percent favorable treatment compared to 31.3 percent for Perot and 23.9 percent for Bush.
 Negative bias was reversed. Unfavorable references to Bush were at 58.9 percent with Perot following at 26.3 percent and Clinton at 14.8 percent.
 Overall, Clinton scored a 48.4 percent favorable rating compared to only 21.9 percent for Bush in terms of coverage specifically devoted to the debates. Favorable coverage for Perot came in at 29.7 percent.
 Negative coverage tipped heavily against Bush. The president's negative reading was 71.9 percent compared to 15.3 percent for Clinton and 12.8 percent for Perot.
 The survey was conducted jointly by PR Data Systems, Norwalk, Conn., a media research firm, and Mead Data Central, Dayton, Ohio. News stories on the debates were retrieved by Mead's NEXIS(R) on-line media database for the period of Sept. 1 - Oct. 31. Editorial and Op-Ed pages were excluded from the study.
 Two news services and 11 major U.S. daily newspapers, with a combined circulation of 7.5 million or 18.2 percent of the total combined circulations of all U.S. dailies, were included in the study. Each news item was rated for favorable-negative-neutral treatment in the headline, lead paragraph and body of the story. Articles also were tested for bias by reporters.
 For the president and Perot, negative comment increased following the first debate while Clinton showed a decrease. Bush's negative reading increased from 69.7 percent to 73.9 percent following the first debate. Perot's negative reading increased from 12.3 percent to 13.4 percent while Clinton's negative rating fell from 18 percent to 12.7 percent.
 A free copy of the study can be obtained from PR Data and Mead Data Central by calling 800-541-6886.
 Mead Data Central is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Mead Corporation (NYSE: MEA), a leader in forest products and electronic publishing. Both Mead and Mead Data Central have headquarters in Dayton, Ohio.
 PR Data Systems is a media research and analysis company specializing in issue tracking and marketing research. The company is based in Norwalk, Conn., with offices in Chicago and New York.
 -0- 11/11/92
 /EDITOR'S NOTE: Complete results of the study along with black and white or color graphics are available/
 /CONTACT: Jack Schoonover or Mark Weiner of PR Data, 203-847-0777, or Craig Jolley of Mead Data Central, 513-865-6800/ CO: Mead Data Central; PR Data Systems ST: Ohio; Connecticut IN: PUB PAP SU:


BM -- CL019 -- 9874 11/11/92 16:33 EST
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No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1992 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Date:Nov 11, 1992
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