Pop Culture, Politics, and the News: Entertainment Journalism in the Polarized Media Landscape (JOURNALISM AND POL COMMUN UNBOUND SERIES)

Pop Culture, Politics, and the News: Entertainment Journalism in the Polarized Media Landscape (JOURNALISM AND POL COMMUN UNBOUND SERIES) by Joel Penney 0197557597 9780197557594
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ISBN: 0197557597

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In Pop Culture, Politics, and the News, Joel Penney explores how pop culture news has taken on an important role in contemporary political discourse. Through coverage of topics like Hollywood diversity, celebrity controversy, and cancel culture backlash, entertainment journalism has emerged as a key source of political information and commentary, providing audiences with an accessible lens into some of the most hot-button issues of our time. Yet due to the clickbait economics of the polarized digital news business, the quality of entertainment journalism is often compromised, and consequently, people view pop culture coverage as soft news with little substance or public value.

Very little is known about how this journalism is produced and consumed as a component of the digital news ecosystem. Moreover, we lack a measured sense of its potential impact on the political interests and knowledge of its audiences, the politics of the entertainment industry it covers, and the shape of public debate more broadly.

Drawing on interviews with entertainment journalists and testimonials from news audiences who share these stories on social media, Joel Penney argues for the importance of reframing our understanding of impactful journalism and persuasive political communication when culture and identity have moved thoroughly to the center of U.S. public discourse. Moreover, Penney examines how audiences engage with this highly accessible and emotionally resonant form of journalism and use it as a resource for political expression and discussion, raising important questions about how it can serve as a bridge to public issue engagement as well as a potential distraction from on-the-ground political concerns. As a cutting-edge, data-rich analysis of the blurring boundaries between entertainment, politics, social media activism, and partisan journalism, Pop Culture, Politics, and the News makes a major contribution to public scholarship on the shifting digital information landscape.

Author: Joel Penney

Language: English

Binding: Paperback

Pages: 264

Publisher: Oxford University Press

Publication Date: 2022-09-27

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