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CREATING THE SCARE: HOW MEDIA FRAMING AND COVERAGE CONTRIBUTED TO PUBLIC PERCEPTION OF THE A (H1N1) PANDEMIC

ABSTRACT Diocton, R.M., & Juan, M. R. (2010). Creating the Scare: How Media Framing and Coverage Contributed to Public Perception of the A(H1N1) Pandemic, Unpublished Undergraduate Thesis, University of the Philippines College of Mass Communication.

This study examines how the Philippine media contributed to Filipino public’s perception and reaction to the A(H1N1) pandemic in the country. The study made use of the triangulation approach in data-gathering and analysis. A one-shot survey of 200 respondents from the entire University of the Philippines Diliman population was conducted to gain public perception. The authors analyzed the broadsheets’ (Philippine Daily Inquirer and Philippine Star) coverage of the A(H1N1) influenza pandemic between the last week of April and the last week of June, 2009 as compared with the coverage of the news sites ABS-CBNNews.com and GMANews.tv. Resource persons and experts from the fields of media, health, and government were also interviewed to further enhance the study’s validity. The researchers found out that the government had become the sole authority during the period of A(H1N1) influenza pandemic. Media therefore had no better option but to depend on the statements and records that the government supplied them. The public was fairly knowledgeable about the pandemic’s general facts, but acted indifferently towards the perceived “media hype.” It didn’t buy the idea of purchasing anti-flu medicines and flu shots, and instead resorted to easily accessible defenses to the virus, like vitamins and sanitary products.

File:DioctonJuan2010.pdf

Subject Index: Epidemics--Philippines, Health in mass media, Public opinion, Press, Newspaper--Circulation, Electronic newspapers

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