“Frames serve to simplify a complex issue or choice by emphasising one dimension over another.” – Matthew C. Nisbet
“Framing is inevitable in making media“. When media is packaged, it usually has a central storyline, derived from the schema from which its frame is based. This schema reflects pre-existing ideas that the frame is intending to reference. Thus, a frame exists to quickly organise information in order to create a perception about the media product itself.
Framing is widely prevalent across all forms of media. It had its humble beginnings in legacy news media, where the framing was closed-off to a small amount of gatekeepers. But now, it is everywhere, thanks to advancements in communications technology. Digital media opens framing to literally everyone. Meaning we now have internet memes, equiped with unique frames which propagate into sub-frames called memeplexes; online personas, based on how we frame ourselves online; and an ever-present issue of media coverage of events that have conflicting frames.
So, this week I decided to explore Nisbet’s model of how media frames structure our political perceptions. However, instead of exploring this issue in relation to a legacy media bias, I wanted to explore how the predicative algorithms which decide what content we see have created a similar problem, but in a digital format. I formulated an image which compares differing news coverage on similar events to highlight how framing determines the perception of a media object.