Under the Media Microscope: Agenda Setting, Framing, and Agenda Building in the 2014 Ebola Outbreak
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This study expands our understanding of effective risk communication in the digital age as it explores the links between the agenda-building efforts of the World Health Organization and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention through Twitter and concurrent news media coverage in Ghana and the United States during the peak of the 2014 Ebola outbreak. It combines a quantitative content analysis (coding) and qualitative content analysis (framing) to find connections, differences, and insights from and across each entity involved. Findings confirm existing literature that tweets play a role in first- and second-level agenda building but also reveal that this effect is not uniform across all types of tweets. In addition, the WHO and CDC exerted partial influence over the media agenda and the subsequent framing of the outbreak.