Examines the modern process of political communication through the eyes of the many different actors who are now involved.
Politics today is inextricably bound to the media, indeed it is now a routine assumption that the media can determine election outcomes. Consequently, over the last 20 years, the conduct of politics has become increasingly driven by what might "play well" on televison or in the press. Not just election campaigning, but other major political platforms including by-elections, budgets, party conferences and set piece speeches have become dominated by media considerations. This is a book about how that relationship works in practice. What sort of deals are done between politicians and journalists? What tactics do politicians use to try and manipulate the media? What are journalists' techniques of resistance? What determines how a campaign is put together? Have policy issues and the national good really been surrendered to image-making and sound-bite tactics? This book examines the modern process of political communication through the eyes of the many different actors who are now involved.Through their own experience, and through personal interviews conducted with many of the key media and political figures, the authors construct a vivid picture of how political communication is managed today and the direction in which it is going.
Table of Contents
Introduction and acknowledgements vii
The crisis in political journalism: an 1 (10)
outline of the argument
Public opinion and the impact of political 11 (21)
The contours of political coverage: who does 32 (16)
what in political journalism
Broadcasters and politicians: a history of 48 (10)
Does ownership matter? 58 (21)
The consequences of competition 79 (17)
The power of party machines 96 (20)
Controlling the Whitehall machine 116(9)
The changing reporting culture 125(10)
Conclusions: why this crisis is real 135(12)