Two separate workshops brought together panellists with experience in mainstream print and broadcast media, as well as in social media. Symposium participants were able to enrich their understanding of the role of the media--and the realities that they face--in covering issues related to HIV/AIDS.
Cancer is increasing in incidence and prevalence in North America and around the world. The mass print media play an important role in information provision about prevention, diagnosis and treatment of this disease, as well as informing health policy and personal experience. This paper reports on a content analysis of the portrayal of cancer in the highest circulating magazines available in Canada and published in Canada or the USA in 1991, 1996, 2001. It includes both manifest and latent analysis of the framing and content of cancer stories. Manifest analysis documented the dominance of the medical as compared to the lifestyle and political economy frames and the predominance of articles on breast as compared to other cancers. Latent themes included: an emphasis on fear of cancer in that: (1) cancer and fear are frequently conflated; cancer is said to grow outside of awareness; cancer is portrayed as (almost) inevitable; cancer is associated with normal experiences; early detection is associated with diagnosis; and scary statistics are emphasized; (2) contradictions and confusion exist within and between articles; and (3) metaphors of war and battle are used frequently. The paper concludes with a discussion of the implications of the linking of fear with cancer in the context of medicine as the solution.
Evaluations of physical activity and health media campaigns have been limited and ignore the complex process of communication and the socially constructed nature of news messages.
A systematic search strategy was conducted of the literature which was then assessed from two perspectives. First, studies since 1998 were reviewed for their success in impacting message recall and behavior change. Second, employing a critical media studies perspective the papers were assessed for the presence of a more sophisticated understanding of the media processes of inception, transmission and reception.
Overall, recent studies support mass media interventions in influencing short-term physical activity message recall and to a lesser extent associated changes in physical activity knowledge. However, the majority of the papers were found to follow a social marketing or media advocacy theory of media promotion with little in-depth consideration of the comprehensive media processes involved in creating media messages and meaning.
Simplistic understandings of media transmission dominate in assessing physical activity and health media campaigns. Fuller understandings of the success of media campaigns, the recall of media messages or associated behaviour change can only truly be understood through the application of a more sophisticated form of media analysis.