Multimedia effects on processing and perception of online news: A study of picture, audio, and video downloads

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

144 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Do multimedia enhancements affect how much individuals learn from online news websites? Do audio and video downloads generate positive impressions of the website in the minds of users? A five-condition, between-participants controlled experiment (N = 60) was designed to address these questions. Each study participant read three news stories from a news website created for the experiment; he or she was given either a text-only version of the news site; a version with text and pictures; one with text and audio; one with text, pictures, and audio; or one with text, pictures, and video. Following exposure, participants filled out a paper-and-pencil questionnaire assessing their memory and perceptions. Results suggest that pictures and audio are particularly powerful psychological cues. In general, multimedia tends to hinder memory for story content and leads to negative evaluations of the site and its content, but improves memory for advertisements. Theoretical and practical implications of these findings are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)480-499
Number of pages20
JournalJournalism and Mass Communication Quaterly
Volume77
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2000

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multimedia
Websites
news
video
Data storage equipment
website
Processing
Experiments
experiment
questionnaire
evaluation

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Communication

Cite this

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abstract = "Do multimedia enhancements affect how much individuals learn from online news websites? Do audio and video downloads generate positive impressions of the website in the minds of users? A five-condition, between-participants controlled experiment (N = 60) was designed to address these questions. Each study participant read three news stories from a news website created for the experiment; he or she was given either a text-only version of the news site; a version with text and pictures; one with text and audio; one with text, pictures, and audio; or one with text, pictures, and video. Following exposure, participants filled out a paper-and-pencil questionnaire assessing their memory and perceptions. Results suggest that pictures and audio are particularly powerful psychological cues. In general, multimedia tends to hinder memory for story content and leads to negative evaluations of the site and its content, but improves memory for advertisements. Theoretical and practical implications of these findings are discussed.",
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