- How emotional media reports influence attitude formation and change: the interplay of attitude base, attitude certainty and persuasion
- Media Psychology
- Volume | Issue number
- 17 | 4
- Pages (from-to)
- Document type
- Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences (FMG)
- Amsterdam School of Communication Research (ASCoR)
This study examined the influence of an emotionally arousing writing style on attitude formation and change. It has been proposed that different writing styles induce attitudes based on either affect or cognition and with either high or low certainty. Previous work indicates that the interplay of these attitude characteristics determines the persuasiveness of emotional and rational media appeals. To test the hypotheses, participants in an experimental study read articles from a magazine about a fictitious attitude object. In the first step, 4 different types of attitudes varying in base and level of certainty were induced through a respectively manipulated article. In the second step, these attitudes were challenged by an additional article, which presented either an emotional or rational persuasive appeal. The results supported hypotheses on attitude induction through media stimuli and 3 of 4 hypotheses regarding the persuasiveness of emotionally and rationally written articles.
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