Advertisement

Can You Hear Me? Political Communication Between MPs and Citizens

  • Luisa Schittny
  • Tinette Schnatterer
Chapter
Part of the New Perspectives in German Political Studies book series (NPG)

Abstract

This study of political communication in France and Germany offers a detailed analysis of citizens’ as well as representatives’ behavior in several political communication situations (interpersonal, mediated by the mass media, online). By comparing MPs’ strategies of top-down political communication with citizens’ tendencies to get political information from traditional media sources, the authors observe a dichotomy in communication styles. A communication gap results from MPs shifting efforts to online channels while citizens continue their reliance on traditional mass media.

References

  1. Abel, François, and Julien Navarro, eds. 2013. Le cumul des mandats en France: causes et consequences. Brussels: Éditions de l’Université de Bruxelles.Google Scholar
  2. Bagehot, Walter. 2001 [1867]. The English Constitution. Oxford and New York: Oxford World’s Classics.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Bennett, Lance. 1990. Towards a Theory of Press-State Relations in the United States. Journal of Communication 40: 103–125. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1460-2466.1990.tb02265.x.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Blais, Andre, and Peter John Loewen. 2009. The French Electoral System and Its Effects. West European Politics 32: 345–359.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Blumler, Jay, and Michael Gurevitch. 1995. The Crisis of Public Communication. London: Routledge.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Bonfadelli, Heinz. 1994. Die Wissenskluft-Perspektive. Massenmedien und gesellschaftliche Information. Konstanz: UVK Medien, Ölschläger.Google Scholar
  7. Coleman, Stephen. 2005. It’s Interactivity, Stupid! In Spinning the Web: Online Campaigning in the 2005 General Election, ed. Stephen Coleman and Stephen Ward, 5–12. London: Hansard Society.Google Scholar
  8. Costa, Olivier, and Eric Kerrouche. 2007. Qui sont les députés français: enquête sur les élites inconnues. Paris: Presses de la fondation nationale des sciences politiques.Google Scholar
  9. Costa, Olivier, Pierre Lefébure, Olivier Rozenberg, Tinette Schnatterer, and Eric Kerrouche. 2012. Far Away; So Close: Parliament and Citizens in France. The Journal of Legislative Studies 18: 294–313. https://doi.org/10.1080/13572334.2012.706046.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. D’Alessio, Dave. 1997. Use of the World Wide Web in the 1996 US Election. Electoral Studies 16: 489–500. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0261-3794(97)00044-9.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Dahl, Robert A. 1989. Democracy and Its Critics. New Haven and London: Yale University Press.Google Scholar
  12. ———. 1998. On Democracy. New Haven and London: Yale University Press.Google Scholar
  13. Denton, Robert E., and Gary C. Woodward. 1990. Political Communication in America. New York: Praeger.Google Scholar
  14. Di Gennaro, Corinna, and William Dutton. 2006. The Internet and the Public: Online and Offline Political Participation in the United Kingdom. Parliamentary Affairs 59: 299–313. https://doi.org/10.1093/pa/gsl004.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Easton, David. 1975. A Re-assessment of the Concept of Political Support. British Journal of Political Science 5: 435–457. https://doi.org/10.1017/S0007123400008309.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Eurostat. 2013. Internet Access and Use in 2013. More than 60% of Individuals in the EU28 Use the Internet Daily. Income Tax Declaration: Most Used E-government Service. Eurostatnews Release 199/2013.Google Scholar
  17. ———. 2015. Level of Internet Access—Households. http://ec.europa.eu/eurostat/tgm/table.do?tab=table&init=1&plugin=1&pcode=tin00134&language=en. Accessed 11 Oct 2015.
  18. Fenno, Richard F. 1978. Home Style: House Members in Their Districts. Boston: Little Brown.Google Scholar
  19. Gans, Herbert J. 2003. Democracy and the News. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  20. Grossmann, Lawrence K. 1995. The Electronic Republic: Reshaping Democracy in the Information Age. New York: Viking.Google Scholar
  21. Hacket, Robert. 1991. News and Dissent: The Press and the Politics of Peace in Canada. Norwood, NJ: Ablex.Google Scholar
  22. Hobold, Sara Binzer, and Robert Klemmensen. 2008. Government Responsiveness and Political Competition in Comparative Perspective. Comparative Political Studies 41: 309–337. https://doi.org/10.1177/0010414006297169.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Hube, Nicolas. 2008. Décrocher la “UNE”. Le choix des titres de première page de la presse quotidienne en France et en Allemagne (1945–2005). Strasbourg: Presses universitaires de Strasbourg.Google Scholar
  24. Kerrouche, Eric. 2009. Usages et usages de la permanence du député. Revue française de science politique 59: 429–454.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. King, Gary. 1991. Constituency Service and Incumbency Advantage. British Journal of Political Science 21: 119–128.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Kühne, Alexander. 2013. Repräsentation enträtselt oder immer noch ‘the Puzzle of Representation‘? Entwicklungen und Lehren aus unterschiedlichen Forschungsstrategien. Zeitschrift für Parlamentsfragen 44: 459–485.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Lasswell, Harold D. 1927. The Theory of Political Propaganda. American Political Science Review 21: 627–631.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Latzer, Michael, Viviane Aubert, Natascha Just, Lena Korinth, and Florian Sauerwein. 2012. Länderprofile der Mediennutzung: Traditionelle und neue Medien im Vergleich. Zürich: IPMZ, Zürich Universität.Google Scholar
  29. Le Lidec, Patrick. 2008. Les députés, leurs assistants et les usages du crédit collaborateurs. Une sociologie du travail politique. Sociologie du Travail 50: 147–168.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Leston-Bandeira, Christina. 2007. Are ICTs Changing Parliamentary Activity in the Portuguese Parliament? Journal of Legislative Studies 13: 3–21. https://doi.org/10.1080/13572330701500870.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Lilleker, Daren G. 2006. Key Concepts in Political Communication. London: Sage.Google Scholar
  32. Luhmann, Niklas. 2004. Die Realität der Massenmedien. Wiesbaden: VS Verlag für Sozialwissenschaften.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Marr, Mirko. 2005. Internetzugang und politische Informiertheit—zur digitalen Spaltung der Gesellschaft. Konstanz: UVK.Google Scholar
  34. Marr, Mirko, and Nicole Zillien. 2010. Digitale Spaltung. In Handbuch Online-Kommunikation, ed. Wolfgang Schweiger and Klaus Beck, 257–282. Wiesbaden: VS Verlag für Sozialwissenschaften.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Mayhew, David R. 1974. The Electoral Connection. New Haven and London: Yale University Press.Google Scholar
  36. McCombs, Maxwell E. 1977. Agenda-Setting Functions of Mass Media. Public Relations Review 3: 89–95. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0363-8111(77)80008-8.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. ———. 2000. Agenda-Setting: Zusammenhänge zwischen Massenmedien und Weltbild. In Publikums- und Wirkungsforschug: Ein Reader, ed. Angela Schorr, 123–136. Wiesbaden: VS Verlag für Sozialwissenschaften.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. McCombs, Maxwell E., and Donald Shaw. 1972. The Agenda-Setting Function of Mass Media. Public Opinion Quarterly 36: 176–187. https://doi.org/10.1086/267990.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Norris, Pippa. 2001. Digital Divide. Civic Engagement, Information Poverty, and the Internet Worldwide. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Norton, Philip. 2007. Four Models of Political Representation: British MPs and the USE of ICT. Journal of Legislative Studies 13: 354–369. https://doi.org/10.1080/13572330701500771.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Oberreuter, Heinrich. 1984. Legitimation durch Kommunikation: zur Parlamentarismusforschung in der Bundesrepublik. In Politische Willensbildung und Interessenvermittlung, ed. Jürgen W. Falter, Christian Fenner, and Michael Th. Greven, 238–253. Opladen: Westdeutscher Verlag.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. Patzelt, Werner J. 2003. Parlamente und ihre Funktionen. In Parlamente und ihre Funktionen: Institutionelle Mechanismen und institutionelles Lernen, ed. Werner J. Patzelt, 13–49. Wiesbaden: VS Verlag für Sozialwissenschaften.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. Römmele, Andrea. 2003. Political Parties, Party Communication and New Information and Communication Technologies. Party Politics 9: 7–20. https://doi.org/10.1177/135406880391002.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. Ronneberger, Franz. 1964. Die politischen Funktionen von Massenkommunikationsmitteln. Publizistik 9: 291–303.Google Scholar
  45. Saalfeld, Thomas, and Ralf Dobmeier. 2012. The Bundestag und German Citizens: More Communication, Growing Distance. The Journal of Legislative Studies 18: 314–333. https://doi.org/10.1080/13572334.2012.706047.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. Sarcinelli, Ulrich. 2011. Politische Kommunikation in Deutschland: Medien und Politikvermittlung im demokratischen System. Wiesbaden: VS Verlag für Sozialwissenschaften.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  47. Sartori, Giovanni. 1976. Parties and Party Systems: A Framework for Analysis. London: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  48. Schulz, Winfried. 2008. Politische Kommunikation: Theoretische Ansätze und Ergebnisse empirischer Forschung. 2nd ed. Wiesbaden: VS Verlag für Sozialwissenschaften.Google Scholar
  49. Schüttemeyer, Suzanne S. 1998. Fraktionen im Deutschen Bundestag 1949–1997: Empirische Befunde und theoretische Folgerungen. Opladen and Wiesbaden: Westdeutscher Verlag.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  50. Siefken, Sven T. 2013. Repräsentanten vor Ort: Selbstverständnis und Verhalten von Bundestagsabgeordneten bei der Wahlkreisarbeit. Zeitschrift für Parlamentsfragen 44: 486–506. https://doi.org/10.5771/0340-1758-2013-3-486.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  51. Soroka, Stuart, and Christopher Wlezien. 2010. Degrees of Democracy: Politics, Public Opinion, and Policy. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  52. Strohmeier, Gerd. 2004. Politik und Massenmedien: Eine Einführung. Baden-Baden: Nomos.Google Scholar
  53. Tenscher, Jens, and Laura Will. 2010. Abgeordnete online? Internetaktivitäten und -bewertungen der Mitglieder des Deutschen Bundestages. Zeitschrift für Parlamentsfragen 41: 504–518. https://doi.org/10.5771/0340-1758-2010-3-504.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  54. Van Aelst, Adam Sehata, and Arjen Van Dalen. 2010. Members of Parliament: Equal Competitors for Media Attention? An Analysis of Personal Contacts Between MPs and Political Journalists in Five European Countries. Political Communication 27: 310–325. https://doi.org/10.1080/10584609.2010.496711.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  55. Van Aelst, Peter, Bart Maddens, Jo Noppe, and Stefan Fiers. 2008. Politicians in the News: Media or Party Logic? Media Attention and Electoral Success in the Belgian Election Campaign of 2003. European Journal of Communication 23: 193–210. https://doi.org/10.1177/0267323108089222.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  56. Verba, Sidney, Kay L. Schlozman, and Henry E. Brady. 1995. Voice and Equality. Civic Voluntarism in American Politics. Cambridge and London: Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
  57. Walgrave, Stefan. 2008. Again, the Almighty Mass Media? The Media’s Political Agenda-Setting Power According to Politicians and Journalists in Belgium. Political Communication 25: 445–459. https://doi.org/10.1080/10584600802427047.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  58. Ward, Stephen, Wainer Lusoli, and Rachel Gibson. 2007. Australian MPs and the Internet: Avoiding the Digital Age? Australian Journal of Public Administration 66: 210–222. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-8500.2007.00529.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  59. Wlezien, Christopher, and Stuart Soroka. 2012. Political Institutions and the Opinion–Policy Link. West European Politics 35: 1407–1432. https://doi.org/10.1080/01402382.2012.713752.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  60. Zielmann, Sarah, and Ulrike Röttger. 2009. Characteristics and Developments of Political Party Web Campaigns in Germany; France; the United Kingdom; and the United States Between 1997 and 2007. In Political Campaigning on the Web, ed. Sigrid Baringhorst, Veronika Kneip, and Johanna Niesyot, 69–87. Bielefeld: Transcript Verlag.Google Scholar
  61. Zittel, Thomas. 2003. Political Representation in the Networked Society: The Americanisation of European Systems of Responsible Party Government. The Journal of Legislative Studies 9: 32–53. https://doi.org/10.1080/1357233042000246855.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  62. ———. 2008. Die elektronische Wählerkommunikation von Abgeordneten aus vergleichender Perspektive—Medienwandel oder Demokratiewandel? Zeitschrift für Politikwissenschaft 18: 185–208. https://doi.org/10.5771/1430-6387-2008-2-185.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  63. ———. 2009. Entmedialisierung durch Neue Digitale Medien? Direkte Wählerkommunikation im WWW aus der Sicht von Abgeordneten des Deutschen Bundestages. In Politik in der Mediendemokratie, ed. Frank Marcinkowski and Barbara Pfetsch, 366–389. Wiesbaden: VS Verlag für Sozialwissenschaften.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  64. ———. 2010. Mehr Responsivität durch neue digitale Medien? Die elektronische Wählerkommunikation von Abgeordneten in Deutschland, Schweden und den USA. Baden-Baden: Nomos.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Luisa Schittny
    • 1
  • Tinette Schnatterer
    • 2
  1. 1.Martin-Luther-University Halle-WittenbergHalle (Saale)Germany
  2. 2.Centre Emile Durkheim, Sciences-Po BordeauxPessacFrance

Personalised recommendations