CNN Effect

The CNN effect is a term that emerged in journalistic jargon and academic debate in the early 1990s. It has been employed in a variety of contexts by scholars, journalists, and policy makers to describe a fairly broad spectrum of phenomena having to do with the impact of news media on politics. In particular, the CNN effect refers to the influence that televised images and news coverage exercise on foreign policy decisions, especially during military interventions and humanitarian crises. By bringing images of war and death into living rooms with an unprecedented intensity and frequency, current media appear to greatly impact domestic public opinion as well as states’ foreign policy. Unlike the manufacturing consent theory developed by Noam Chomsky and Edward Hermann, where journalistic coverage ...

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