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A Study on Press Coverage in the Early Stages of Infectious Diseases : SARS, H1N1, EVD, MERS, COVID-19

  • Health Communication Research
  • 2022, 21(1), pp.57-120
  • DOI : 10.24172/hcr.2022.21.1.57
  • Publisher : Korea Health Communication Association
  • Research Area : Social Science > Journalism and Broadcasting > Communication
  • Received : May 31, 2022
  • Accepted : July 18, 2022
  • Published : August 1, 2022

myeongji Jin 1 Park Kyong Suk 1

1제주대학교

Accredited

ABSTRACT

This study compared and analyzed the characteristics of Korean media reports during the first month after the outbreak of five infectious diseases, including SARS, H1N1, Ebola virus disease, Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS), and the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). We set the analysis period on the KBS News 9 (www.news.kbs.co.kr) and SBS News 8 (www.news.sbs.co.kr) websites to find related content, selecting only articles related to infectious diseases through replay and scriptor ser vices. In total, 2,549 news articles were finally selected through this process. First, the results indicated that regarding the characteristics of each media company's reporting on infectious diseases, all companies focused the most on response analysis (1,309, 42.5%) and the least on cause analysis (379, 12.3%). In addition, regarding the in-depth coverage of each media company, the number of was the largest, with only 262 articles (10%) professional reporters, a relatively small number. Looking at the factual nature of the report, both newspapers and broadcasters tried to report on a fact-centered basis. In terms of reporting direction, 2,226 reports (87.4%) of neutral tone were the most, and more negative tone (290, 114%) were reported than positive tone (32, 1.3%). In the type of information source, the Korean government and local governments (1,259, 31.1%) were most frequently used, followed by Korean experts (615, 15.2%). Looking at the frame types of Ron Report, information frames (1,489, 34.2%) were the most common, and both newspapers and broadcasters used the least prevention frames. Newspaper companies had a high proportion of economic frame types, and broadcasters had high persuasion frames and horror frames. Since encouraging public worry in early media coverage of infectious disease outbreaks is not desirable, a press frame should be developed to discourage conjecture and exaggeration and advocate sensible response and prevention activities.

Citation status

* References for papers published after 2022 are currently being built.