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Licensed Unlicensed Requires Authentication Published by De Gruyter Mouton January 30, 2018

The effects of visual isolation on the perception of scandalized politicians

  • Christian von Sikorski and Mark Ludwig
From the journal Communications


In their depictions of scandalized politicians, journalists frequently use news images that highlight the (alleged) isolation of politicians. To test how this way of portraying political actors affects a recipient’s attitudes and his/her guilt perception toward such a scandalized politician an experiment was conducted. All participants were exposed to the identical textual information. However, the visual information (degree of isolation) was systematically altered. A multivariate analysis of covariance (MANCOVA) showed that participants – exposed to a visual highlighting the isolation of the politician – evaluated the politician in a significantly more negative way and rated other recipients’ perceptions of the politician’s level of guilt to be higher.

Published Online: 2018-1-30
Published in Print: 2018-6-26

©2018 Walter de Gruyter GmbH, Berlin/Boston

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