The Influence of Media Type on the Third Person Effect

Frederic Guerrero-Solé


Although in the last three decades many works have been devoted to the study of Davison’s (1983) Third-Person Effect (TPE) for a great variety of media contents, as far as we know none of them has explored the presumed impact of media type on the magnitude of the effect. The objective of this study is to compare the magnitude of the TPE for news, advertising, violence and pornography on TV and the Internet, and its behavioral consequences for controversial contents. The study shows that media type has an impact on the TPE for news, advertising and pornography, but not for violent content. On the contrary, it shows that there is not a clear relationship between media type and people’s willingness to support the limitation of controversial contents, such as violence and pornography.


third-person effect, violence, pornography, Internet, television, censorship

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