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Is media driving Americans apart?

December 7, 2017

In an Op Ed at the New York Times on Dec. 6, economics professor Jesse Shapiro, with co-authors Levi Boxell and Matthew Gentzkow, discuss the role of social media in the increasing polarization of American voters. They point out that the role of social media can be exaggerated, since it is still not the main news source for more than a relatively small slice of the U.S. population, and polarized views are also stoked by competing television stations and other sources. Moreover, the media don't operate independently of larger forces. They conclude by stating "the factors that likely matter the most are those that have caused the real experiences of Americans to diverge."

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