NEWS MEDIA USAGE, POLITICAL INTEREST AND POLITICAL PARTICIAPTION
The purpose of the research is to examine (a) the age differences in news media usage and, (b) the effects of using different media for political news on different political participation and, (c) whether the political interest plays as a mediator between different media for political news usage on different forms of political participation.
Theory: Political Participation Theory, Users and gratification Theory, Mobilization Theory
Method: Multiple regression analysis, Simply mediation analysis
Result: The findings show that 1) in Australia, both institutionalized and non-institutionalized forms of political participation have increased over time, and the non-institutionalized forms of political participation increased even more. 2) Young citizens use the internet for political news more often than older citizens and on the contrary, old citizens are more likely to use traditional media for political news than younger citizens. Furthermore, the results of multiple regression analyses indicate that 3) using traditional media and the internet for poetical news have positive effects on both institutionalized and non-institutionalized forms of political participation. Besides, the study finds that using traditional media for political news is a stronger predictor for institutionalized forms of political participation compared to the non-institutionalized forms of political participation. And a similar pattern is found in the effects of using the internet for political news on political participation. Moreover, the study also shows that using media for political news increases citizens’ political interest, in other words, 4) political interest mediates the relationship between different news media usage and political participation.