Does the Information Source Matter? Newspaper Readership, Political Preferences and Attitudes Towards the EU in the UK, France and the Netherlands
Previous research has indicated that political radicals and cynics tend to obtain information from like-minded media sources. In this study, we relate media use to political preferences by utilising a cross-national large-N data set collected during the European elections in 2014 through an online opt-in sample and the European Election Studies (EES), in order to test whether individuals who are negatively opinionated towards the EU and the political elite get informed via media that have a similar attitude towards the EU and politics. Our findings indicate that Eurosceptic voters differ considerably from moderate and pro-European voters in terms of their daily media use. In addition, we find that getting informed via a left-wing- or a right-wing-oriented mainstream media matters, when explaining voter’s policy preferences.
KeywordsEuroscepticism Newspapers European elections France UK Netherlands
- Anderson, P. 2004. A Flag of Convenience? Discourse and Motivations of the London-based Eurosceptic Press. In Euroscepticism: Party Politics, National Identity and European Integration, ed. R. Harmsen and M. Spiering, 151–170. Amsterdam: Rodopi.Google Scholar
- Bijsmans, P. (2017, this volume) EU Media Coverage in Times of Crisis: Euroscepticism Becoming Mainstream? in M. Caiani and S. Guerra (eds.) Euroscepticism, Democracy and the Media. Communicating Europe, Contesting Europe (Basingstoke: Palgrave Studies in European Political Sociology).Google Scholar
- de Wilde, P., A. Michailidou, and H.-J. Trenz, eds. 2013. Contesting Europe: Exploring Euroscepticism in Online Media Coverage. Colchester: ECPR Press.Google Scholar
- Flood, C. 2002. The Challenge of Euroscepticism. In The European Union Handbook, ed. J. Gower, 2nd ed., 73–84. London: Fitzroy Dearborn.Google Scholar
- George, S. 1990. An Awkward Partner: Britain in the European Community. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
- Kleinnijenhuis, J., and P. Pennings. 2001. Measurement of Party Positions on the Basis of Party Programmes, Media Coverage and Voter Perceptions. In Estimating the Policy Positions of Political Actors, ed. M. Laver, 162–182. London: Routledge.Google Scholar
- Krouwel, A.. 2012. Party Transformations in European Democracies. Albany: SUNY Press.Google Scholar
- Libération. 2016. Édito: Triple Non. http://www.liberation.fr/planete/2016/04/25/triple-non_1448625. Accessed 15 May 2016.
- Le Monde. 2016. Crise des réfugiés: l’Europe vit un moment historique. http://www.lemonde.fr/idees/article/2016/02/26/crise-des-refugies-l-europe-vit-un-moment-historique_4872353_3232.html. Accessed 15 May 2016.
- Newsweek. 2016. Europe’s Dismay Grows Over Threat of Brexit After British Referendum. http://europe.newsweek.com/europes-dismay-grows-over-threat-brexit-after-british-referendum-326686. Accessed 15 May 2016.
- Sorensen, C. 2006. Types of Euroscepticism. Copenhagen: Danish Institute for International Studies.Google Scholar
- The Financial Times. 2016. Brexit deal: Reaction Across Continental Europe. http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/767cbfa8-d880-11e5-a72f-1e7744c66818.html#axzz42zqtmYEY. Accessed 15 May 2016.
- The Washington Post. 2016. The U.K. Leaving the European Union Could Mean the End of Both of them. https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/the-uk-leaving-the-european-union-could-mean-the-end-of-both-of-them/2016/02/05/6970d39a-cb5a-11e5-ae11-57b6aeab993f_story.html. Accessed 15 May 2016.
- van Prooijen J.W., A.P. Krouwel, and T.V. Pollet. 2015. Political Extremism Predicts Belief in Conspiracy Theories. Social Psychological and Personality Science 6(5): 570–578.Google Scholar
- van Spanje, J., and C. de Vreese. 2014. Europhile Media and Eurosceptic Voting: Effects of News Media Coverage on Eurosceptic Voting in the 2009 European Parliamentary Elections. Political Communication 31(2): 325–354.Google Scholar
- Vliegenthart, R., A.R. Schuck, H.G. Boomgaarden, and C.H. de Vreese. 2008. News Coverage and Support for European Integration, 1990–2006. International Journal of Public Opinion Research 20(4): 415–439.Google Scholar