Americans prefer to read articles that agree with their views

May 29th, 2009 - 5:30 pm ICT by ANI  

Washington, May 29 (ANI): Americans choose to read articles that agree with the opinions they already hold, a new study has found.

The study was conducted by Silvia Knobloch-Westerwick, associate professor of communication at Ohio State University, along with Jingbo Meng, a former master’s degree student in communication at Ohio State.

They found that people spent 36 percent more time reading articles that agreed with their point of view than they did reading text that challenged their opinions.

The authors also found that even when participants did read articles that countered their views, they almost always balanced that with reading others that confirmed their opinions.

According to them, the study has significance because it is one of the first to record what people actually read and link these findings to their views on the same topics.

“We found that people generally chose media messages that reinforced their own preexisting views. In general, they don’t want their views to be challenged by seriously considering other viewpoints,” said Knobloch-Westerwick.

The study involved 156 undergraduate students at an American university.

Their results appear in the June 2009 issue of the journal Communication Research. (ANI)

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