Politics & Media
Aug 21, 2008, 06:31AM

Media Zeroing In On Young Voters

Cable news outlets are reaching out to politically aware youth, yet that demographic is far less likely to actually watch cable news. Their efforts to connect with Generation Y mirror what the campaigns themselves are doing to break a "vicious cycle" of political disillusionment and disconnect among the young.

News outlets, especially broadcast media stations like CNN, Fox News and NBC, have begun to zero in on young and first-time voters. CNN has a "League of First Time Voters," which, according to the Web site, is a "resource to learn about elections basics" and a "community where you can express yourself and meet other League members." Unregistered citizens can also register to vote, learn information about the candidates and compare their stances on issues like the economic stimulus, energy, housing and immigration.

Fox News aired a special program last month entitled "The Y Factor," in which Heather Nauert, a Fox News reporter, described in detail the Y Generation. In an interview with Morley Winograd and Michael Hais, authors of Millennial Makeover: MySpace, YouTube, and the Future of American Politics, they described this November's election as one in which a majority of young voters will take an interest in politics.

This comes at a time when only about a third of those in the younger-than-25 age demographic watch cable news, according to a study performed by the Pew Research Center. In the same demographic, another third get no news on a typical day.


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