Malden, MA : Wiley
InDonsbach, W. (ed.), The international encyclopedia of communication, pp. 1-3
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Donsbach, W. (ed.), The international encyclopedia of communication
SubjectCommunication and Media
"Tabloid" means compact size. In reference to the press it describes smaller-sized -> newspapers. Yet in contemporary journalism the term "tabloid" refers to both newspapers and television and carries a strong normative evaluation of news work (-> Television News). In many respects, the term "tabloid" has become removed from its original meaning and attached itself to the idea of sensational news coverage (-> Scandalization in the News; Sensationalism). Slogans like "if it bleeds it leads" and "bodybag journalism" refer to emphases on death and destruction and are commonly used in reference to tabloid news. An assessment of public debate among media critics and academics about this journalistic style reveals sweeping declarations about its corruptive influence on journalism. At the heart of this debate are two popular concerns: tabloid journalism violates notions of social decency, and it displaces socially significant stories.
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