The Coverage of 2015 Elections debate in the UK Essay

The Coverage of 2015 Elections argument in the UK


Public arguments by political leaders are at the centre of democracy today. The purpose of such arguments is to supply the general populace with a place of each of the political leaders on assorted issues of public concern. The media plays an of import function in informing the populace of the stances taken by the leaders and it besides gives the populace the opportunity to aerate their positions about the same. In this position, the modern democratic rule put focal point on the population’s authorization through information ( Chambers, 2001 ) . In some scenes the usage of these arguments is for the intent of measuring the political leaders’ stances on assorted political issues refering the state.

Mass media plays an of import function in covering these arguments and supplying their audience with different positions of these arguments. The media besides gives the audience the chance to aerate their positions about these arguments and political personal businesss and receive feedback for more informed determinations. This paper gives a survey of the coverage of the 2015 party leaders’ argument in the UK. It uses the Huffington station, the Daily mirror, the defender and the telegraph newspapers’ articles to analyze the prejudice of coverage of the argument.


General elections provide the populace with an chance to choose new political leaders into office. The populace has to listen to the politicians sell their policies and do determinations on who best suits the office after an rating of the policies of the different parties. A public argument is one forum where the populace can acquire a prevue of the policies and do a comparing on the different stances taken by the campaigners. In some election instances, the incumbent leader can do a determination to run for the same office as before. The influence held by the officeholder can at times skew the coverage of the electioneering procedure to their favour or give them a negative image in the media.

Rozzel ( 1991 ) , reviews the coverage of gubernatorial elections of 1989 in Virginia. This survey uses a figure of newspapers which include the Washington station, New York Times, the wall street Journal, clip, Los Angeles times and the universe study among others. This survey found out that the coverage was biased in favour of the Wilder run as compared to the opposition Coleman. This tendency indicates that there are a figure of grounds that skew the coverage of the runs in favour of a campaigner and disfavours others. For case, Allan Keyes a black campaigner in the Maryland senate elections believed that his position as a black campaigner in the elections disfavored his bid’s coverage in the 1989 elections. Furthermore, keyes was a black campaigner small known to many in the province and the opposition was a white officeholder. Critics of the Keyes place believe that the coverage of the opposition was motivated by the strength that the opposition had and the demographics of the province at that clip.

From Keyes ( 1989 ) , it is apparent that coverage prejudice can be as a consequence of tenure. Many political analysts and surveies believe that the power of tenure has the potency to non merely do purchase to a campaigner but it has the same potency to burthen a campaigning excessively. Incumbency is one of the many features that can do a polarisation in the elector sections if non decently handled. Some surveies have noted that the journalists’ action to supply much coverage to one campaigner could hold a polarizing consequence on the elector. This state of affairs is frequently worsened if the feature or place being highlighted by the media is non popular. In Himelstein ( 1983 ) , race baiting is the illustration given to exemplify this state of affairs.

Jeffries ( 2002 ) gives the defence posted by the journalists to cover their action of note covering the campaigners every bit. Harmonizing to this survey, the journalists believe that in the determiners of more coverage are the actions of the campaigners in the run trail. These factors include the addresss given, the background of the campaigner and the degree of experience ( Williams 1990 ) . Experience and background in this instance can hold the same significance as tenure. The chief ground behind this decision is that a campaigner who is incumbent will hold a custodies on experience one the occupation and a background of service in the same office.


Four newspapers were selected for this survey. These include The Huffington Post, The Daily Mirror, The Guardian and The Telegraph. The choice of these newspapers was as a consequence of their consideration or penchant in their ideological place on how they report their intelligence articles. The Huffington Post is seen as an Independent participant, The Daily mirror is leftist democrat, and The Guardian has a center-left and social-liberal political orientation. The Telegraph is conservative in political orientation. This choice was strategic in giving the survey a balanced position of the taking political political orientations in the state.

The survey qualitatively analyzed the usage of words and images by the newspapers with the purpose of finding any signifier of onslaught on the campaigners in this election. It besides looked at the headlines of the chief articles that were reviewed in the newspapers and the location of the articles within the lineation of the documents. The survey focused on the documents use of words like “scared” and “refusal” to place cases of onslaught against the candidates’ place on the argument. Scared would intend that the campaigner is depicted by the journalist as weak and would neglect in the argument. Refusal indicates that the journalist implies that a campaigner had a motivation behind their deficiency of engagement on the argument. As such the usage of these two words would paint the campaigner in bad image and cause polarisation of the electorate.


All these newspapers did give the argument buildup about an equal screen in their articles. The Huffington station had much of its articles balanced with small usage of the words identified above. Of the 10 articles reviewed in the period running from January 5Thursdayto March 22neodymium, merely one article comes near to a possible prejudice. The article describes the incumbent campaigner as giving an ultimatum on the argument that each of the other campaigners must take or bury the whole thought of argument raw ( Vale, 2015 ) . While the usage of image by this newspaper remains mostly balanced, in this article, the writers chose to utilize the image of the incumbent premier curate in the last argument in 2010. In this image, Mr Cameron is good groomed but looks clueless of what he is talking approximately. In this argument, it is reported that the opposition of the leader took the twenty-four hours cryptically.

In the mirror, the onslaught on the officeholder is more apparent. The comments made by this campaigner that the green party demands to be invited to the argument excessively made the journalists of The Mirror to mention to the campaigner as “the poulet torry leader” . These comments are non merely opprobrious of the personality that he is but besides biased against the campaigner. The journalists in this article does non pay acute attending to the place taken by the leader but alternatively Judgess the leader as seeking to shy away from the public argument.

The guardian takes a more balanced place in studies refering to the argument both in image and in word. In most of the image taken by the newspaper, the three campaigners in 2010 public argument are standing side by side bespeaking that there is no particular prejudice to anyone of them in image. In words the newspaper tries merely to give the place of other observers but remains purely within its function to describe and give history of the procedure.

The telegraph has no different attack from a bulk of the newspapers. The overall tone of the coverage is that the incumbent leader has shown a general refusal to go to the argument. As such much of the studies that are contained in the article of the Telegraph are biased against the incumbent campaigner. The articles portray the campaigner as utilizing his place to forestall a argument from taking topographic point.

Discussion and decision

In all the articles reviewed, the incumbent campaigner received a wider coverage than any other campaigners in the developments of the argument procedure. This could be attributed to the experience, background and alone place taken by the campaigner. Much of this promotion was non favourable as much of the content focused on the negativeness of non go toing the argument. In fact some articles had already concluded that the campaigner had backed out every bit early as January. The usage of image by all this newspapers was biased and pointed to the fact that the campaigner had shifted his place on the topic.

In decision, political arguments form a really of import platform for the aspirant political leading to be evaluated. It is nevertheless non the lone platform that can be used to estimate the leader’s ability. Therefore, in describing about these arguments, the journalists should non take it as the general feeling of a campaigner towards an election. In this instance, the four media houses have a colored coverage of the procedure. Even though one campaigner receives much coverage, the coverage is clouded with negativeness.


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