What Happens in the Eye of the Storm? News Ideology During Media Storms

Doron Shultziner


Media storms are surges of intensive story coverage for an unusual news cycle. As such they are an important phenomenon to study in democracies. News ideology is the tendency to bias media coverage based on partisan interests or ideological orientation. This research is the first to explore the causal nexus between the two phenomena. This article also proposes several hypotheses concerning the strategic partisan behavior of news outlets during media storms. It examines the use of production mechanisms to bias news coverage and conceptualizes two stages within media storms. The data come from two major erupting media storms: the Yellow Vests Movement in France and the Occupy Movement in Israel. Both storms were mass social movements that challenged the political and economic status quo and enjoyed high public approval. The findings suggest the following: Media coverage of the storms was nevertheless affected by news ideology; front page and the sizing of articles were used as emphasizing means; and news ideology crystallized during the height of the media storms.


partisan media bias, news ideology, media storms, media hypes, media waves, media dynamics, media balance

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