The Editor, the Publisher, and His Mother: The Representation of Lesbians and Gays in the New York Times

Daniel Chomsky, Scott Barclay

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

The attention and prominence given to issues in media outlets may affect the importance citizens attribute to them, so the actors who influence mass media coverage decisions may have political power in society generally. This article seeks to measure the relative influence of journalists, social trends, events, government officials, editors, and owners on the New York Times coverage of lesbians and gays from 1960 to 1995. Although many factors affected the nature and frequency of such coverage, the findings of this article show that the owners of the Times exerted decisive influence. Documentary evidence reveals that the Times' owners actively intervened to suppress coverage of lesbians and gays until 1987, even as reporters and editors recognized that increased social visibility made them newsworthy. Statistical analysis confirms that, although some actual events and statements of officials attracted attention from the newspaper throughout the period, they were more likely to generate prominent coverage after 1987 when the stories were consistent with the enthusiasms of the owners.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1389-1408
Number of pages20
JournalJournal of Homosexuality
Volume60
Issue number10
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 2013

Keywords

  • New York Times
  • editors
  • journalists
  • media coverage
  • owners
  • public opinion

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Gender Studies
  • Social Psychology
  • Education
  • Psychology(all)

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'The Editor, the Publisher, and His Mother: The Representation of Lesbians and Gays in the New York Times'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this