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Hierarchy of Influences
Hierarchy of influences

A theoretical framework, developed in Shoemaker and Reese (1996), which examines news media in relation to ‘levels of analysis’ and investigates the way factors which influence the production of news operate ‘both separately and in conjunction with each other’ (Reese, 2001: 178). The helpful text-reader by Berkowitz (1997) was also organized in accordance to this approach, with chapters grouped into sections which ‘focus on different degrees of social aggregation–individual, organizational, institutional and societal’ influences on journalism and news production (ibid.: xiii).

Taking each of these levels of analysis in turn: news can first be studied as the product of (individual) journalists. In the words of Gieber (1964), ‘news is what newspapermen make it’ and this approach is perhaps best embodied in early ...

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