The #metoo movement and cultivation theory: a quantitative research communication study
Green, Jessica R.
AdvisorDooley, Patricia L.
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Because television is an ever-present form of media, it can be accessed by anyone, anywhere, at any time. Since the 1970s, George Gerbner and other media scholars have recommended that cultivation theory be used to study television and other media forms to learn whether consumers of media content, over long periods of time, develop fears (“mean world syndrome”) that the world is a more dangerous place than it is. The recent controversy surrounding the #MeToo movement might be helping to mitigate the long-term cultivation effects of workplace-centered entertainment television programs. The movement began in 2006, gained popularity as a social media movement in 2017, and has continued to evolve ever since. Using a quantitative research approach, an online survey questionnaire was administered to 406 participants, who answered questions about their consumption of two types of television: workplace centered entertainment programming and news/public affairs programming about the #MeToo movement. All of the study’s six hypotheses support the idea that heavy viewing of such content has led to cultivations effects. In fact, the research revealed mixed results for cultivation effects. Future research should explore such mixed results for better understanding of these issues.
Thesis (M.A.)-- Wichita State University, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, Elliot School of Communication