- Suspicious minds: explaining political cynicism among political journalists in Europe
- European Journal of Communication
- Volume | Issue number
- 26 | 2
- Pages (from-to)
- Document type
- Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences (FMG)
- Amsterdam School of Communication Research (ASCoR)
Critics claim that journalists spread a cynical view of politics, as their relation with politicians is characterized by mistrust and hyper-adversarialism. To gain an insight into how cynical journalists themselves are about politics and how this can be explained, this article investigates the role relationship between politicians and journalists in four European countries with different political communication systems. The empirical basis for the study is a survey of over 400 political reporters from the UK, Denmark, Germany and Spain. Compared to their colleagues in Northern Europe, Spanish journalists have the most cynical view of politicians, which can partly be explained by feelings of political pressure. Journalists are cynical when they have a negative view of the role of spin doctors and believe that politicians use the media as a podium where they can be in the spotlight. The possible influence of journalists’ political attitudes on news content is discussed.
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