State of the Media: Annual event analyzes politics and elections - Spring 2004 Ivy Leaf Magazine

Ivy Leaf - Spring 2004

State of the Media

Annual event analyzes politics and elections

Where do most people get their news about politics and election coverage? A local panel of media experts believes that young people may be getting their political information from the wrong places. The panel joined with Penn State Altoona faculty, staff, and students to discuss the issue of media coverage this past month at the College.

"Variety shows, like 'The Daily Show' get people interested in politics, but (voters) can't rely on them for factual information," said Tony DeGol, executive producer at WTAJ-TV10 in Altoona.

Members of the media also said that the way in which they cover elections is not perfect, and that there are so many facets to each story that it can be a challenge.

"The media is still learning how to cover elections," said Ray Eckenrode, managing editor of the Altoona Mirror. "The media has to compete with each other for stories, but we are also competing for people's time."

The Internet was also discussed as a way for voters to obtain information, and several panelists agreed that it has become apolitical resource, especially for a younger audience.

"Young people look at the Internet for information more than any other form of media," said Greg Victor, wire editor for the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.

Sponsored by Penn State Altoona's communications program, the panel was part of the College's State of the Media program, which is held annually to bring experts in the media field together to discuss pertinent issues.