Methodological Considerations in Pretrial Publicity Research: Is the Medium the Message?

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Abstract

Two methodological issues within the pretrial publicity (PTP) literature were examined in the present experiment: the effect of emotional versus factual PTP and the effect of presenting PTP through different media. Emotional and factual PTP were constructed that differed in level of emotionality, but produced the same degree of bias. The PTP was presented in either a videotaped or written format. Although there was a significantly biasing effect of PTP overall compared to a control condition, no significant difference was found either between factual and emotional PTP or between video and written PTP.

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