Stephen Colbert's Civics Lesson: How Colbert Super PAC Taught Viewers About Campaign Finance

  title={Stephen Colbert's Civics Lesson: How Colbert Super PAC Taught Viewers About Campaign Finance},
  author={Bruce W. Hardy and Jeffrey A. Gottfried and Kenneth Winneg and Kathleen Hall Jamieson},
  journal={Mass Communication and Society},
  pages={329 - 353}
This study tests whether exposure to The Colbert Report influenced knowledge of super PACs and 501(c)(4) groups, and ascertains how having such knowledge influenced viewers' perceptions about the role of money in politics. Our analysis of a national random sample of adults interviewed after the 2012 presidential election found that viewing The Colbert Report both increased peoples' perception of how knowledgeable they were about super PACs and 501(c)(4) groups and increased actual knowledge of… 

Maybe it Is More Than a Joke: Satire, Mobilization, and Political Participation*

Objective The objective of this study was to examine the relationship between viewing late night political humor and political participation. Methods We used various measures of viewership of late

From the Studio to the Street: Cultivating Democratic Norms in Uganda

Communication interventions can make valuable contributions to the democratic development of citizens. This article reports on a nongovernmental organization’s (NGO’s) effort to leverage a television

Funny Evidence: Female Comics are the New Policy Entrepreneurs

The last decade has seen on-going issues of gender inequity as well as arguably the golden age of female comics. From Tina Fey and Amy Poehler’s renditions of Sarah Palin and Hillary Clinton in 2008,

Political Satire TV Shows in the Trump’s Era: Examining Their Impact on Latinx Viewers’ Political Knowledge, Political Engagement, and Trust in Institutions

ABSTRACT The popularity of political satire on American television has led to a significant amount of research on their role in American political life. However, the current political satire

I Am Super PAC and So Can You! Stephen Colbert and the Citizen-Fool

This essay analyzes Stephen Colbert’s 2012 “out-of-the-box” prank in which he created and operated a legally recognized Super PAC during the 2012 election cycle. Contextualized by the Supreme and

Go Fix It: Comedy as an Agent of Political Activation*

Objective One of the recent late‐night political comedy successes is John Oliver's Last Week Tonight, which includes frequent calls to action at the end of a segment, encouraging viewers to do

Climate as Comedy

Two satirical television news programs, The Daily Show and The Colbert Report, cover climate change in ways that affirm the existence of global warming. This study uses data from an experiment (N =

The bedtime story wars: children’s picturebooks as parodic advocacy

ABSTRACT A growing force in children’s literature, public figures’ crossover picturebooks are designed to appeal to adults and children alike. This study takes a critical look at the crossover

The Foundations of U.S. Public Opinion About Campaign Finance in the Post-Citizens United Era

Abstract Those seeking to influence campaign finance policy often invoke public opinion to support their legal and policy arguments. Thus, an understanding of the factors that explain citizens' views



The Daily Show Effect

We test the effects of a popular televised source of political humor for young Americans: The Daily Show With Jon Stewart. We find that participants exposed to jokes about George W. Bush and John

Breaking Boundaries| When Parody and Reality Collide: Examining the Effects of Colbert’s Super PAC Satire on Issue Knowledge and Policy Engagement across Media Formats

Following the 2010 U.S. Supreme Court landmark decision on campaign finance (i.e., Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission), political comedian Stephen Colbert took to the airways with a new

Mr. Stewart and Mr. Colbert Go to Washington: Television Satirists Outside the Box

The political satirists Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert are largely celebrated for their nightly television programs, which use humor to offer useful political information, provide important forums

Political Comedy Shows and Knowledge About Primary Campaigns: The Moderating Effects of Age and Education

Humorous coverage of political objects (e.g., political figures, issues, and events) is one of the central themes of political comedy shows (e.g., Saturday Night Live and The Daily Show with Jon

A Typology for the Study of Entertainment Television and Politics

General questions concerning the role of entertainment media in politics permeated the 2004 election cycle. Political communication scholars are beginning to systematically analyze potential

Learning about Politics From The Daily Show: The Role of Viewer Orientation and Processing Motivations

Although late-night comedy and satirical news programs like The Daily Show have been recognized as important sources of political information, prior research suggests that viewers gain only a limited

Sex, Lies, and War: How Soft News Brings Foreign Policy to the Inattentive Public

  • M. Baum
  • Political Science
    American Political Science Review
  • 2002
This study argues that, due to selective political coverage by the entertainment-oriented, soft news media, many otherwise politically inattentive individuals are exposed to information about

Adding Nuance to the Study of Political Humor Effects: Experimental Research on Juvenalian Satire Versus Horatian Satire

This study extends political humor effects research by focusing on two distinct types of satire, juvenalian and horatian. Theoretical arguments grounded in the elaboration likelihood model culminated

The Absence of Narrative: Boredom and the Residual Power of Television News

AbstractThe article begins by arguing—against conventional wisdom—that one of the defining features of television news is the absence of narrative codes in its structure. Rather than raising the

Late-Night Learning: Do Entertainment Programs Increase Political Campaign Knowledge for Young Viewers?

The fragmenting media landscape has led many, particularly younger citizens, to identify entertainment-based programs as key sources of political information. This research used national survey data