ASSESSMENT OF READERS PERCEPTION OF THE USE OF PHOTOGRAPHS IN NIGERIAN NEWSPAPERS

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TABLE OF CONTENTS

Title page                                                                                                                                i                                                                                                   

Declaration                                                                                                                              ii                                                                                               

Certification                                                                                                                            iii                                                                                       

Dedication                                                                                                                              iv                                                                                                        

Acknowledgement                                                                                                                  v                                                                                          

Table of contents                                                                                                                    vi                                                                                           

List of tables                                                                                                                                       viii                                                                                                   

Abstract                                                                                                                                  x                                                                                                          

CHAPTER ONE: INTRODUCTION

1.1 Background of the study                                                                                                  1                                                                       1.2 Statement of the problems                                                                                                3                                                                  1.3 Objective of the study                                                                                                      4                                                                 

1.4 Research questions                                                                                                            4                                                                                      

1.5 Scope of the study                                                                                                            4                                                                                               

1.6 Significance of the study                                                                                                  5

1.7 Definition of terms                                                                                                                       5                                        

CHAPTER TWO: REVIEW OF LITERATURE

2.1 Introduction                                                                                                                      6                                                              

2.2 Review of concepts                                                                                                          6                                                                                

2.3 Review of related studies                                                                                                 19                                                                           

2.4 Theoretical framework                                                                                                      22                                                                                 

2.5 Summary                                                                                                                           24                                                                                              

CHAPTER THREE: RESEARCH METHODOLOGY

3.1 Introduction                                                                                                                      26                                                                                               

3.2 Research design                                                                                                                26 

3.3 Population of  the study                                                                                                   26  

3.4  Sample and Sampling techniques                                                                                    27                                                          

3.5 Description of research instrument                                                                                   28                                          

3.6 Validity and reliability of data gathering instrument                                                       28

3.7 Method of data collection                                                                                                28                                                          

3.8  Method of data presentation and analysis                                                                       28       

CHAPTER FOUR: DATA PRESENTATION AND ANALYSIS

4.1 Introduction                                                                                                                      29                                                                                             

4.2 Analysis of bio data                                                                                                          30                                                                    

4.3 Analysis of data from survey (field)                                                                                 33 

4.4 Discussion of findings                                                                                                      40                                                                  

CHAPTER FIVE: SUMMARY, CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATIONS

5.1 Introduction                                                                                                                      44                                                                                                 

5.2 Summary                                                                                                                           44                                                                     

5.3 Conclusion                                                                                                                        44                                                                                           

5.4 Recommendations                                                                                                            45   

5.5 Suggestions for further studies                                                                                         45                                                                

Bibliography                                                                                                                           46

Appendix                                                                                                                                49

LIST OF TABLES

Tables on demography of respondents

Table 1: Gender distribution of respondents                                                             30

Table 2: Distribution of age range                                                                             30

Table 3: Marital status of respondents                                                                       31

Table 4: Educational qualifications of respondents                                                   31

Table 5: Occupational status of respondents                                                             32

Analysis of data from survey (field)

Table 6:   Are you attracted to newspaper?                                                               33

Table 7:   Are there photographs in the newspapers?                                                33

Table 8:   Which Nigerian newspapers are you attracted to?                                    34

Table 9:   To what extent are you attracted to Newspaper?                                       34

Table 10: What area of the photographs/pictures in newspaper attracts you more?  35                                                                                   

Table11:  How do you view photographs in Newspaper?                                         36

Table12:  What angle do you view photographs in newspapers?                              36                                                         

Table 13: Do you understand those photographs viewed in the newspapers?           37

Table14:  To what extent do newspapers readers view the importance of

                 photographs on newspapers                                                                       37                                                                                              

Table 15: Are you fascinated by the credibility of stories in newspaper

     accompanied with photographs?                                                               38                                                                                     

Table 16: What aesthetic appeal do you derived from photographs in newspapers? 38                                                                                           

Table 17: To what impact are the credibility of photographs contributes in

      attracting readers to newspapers?                                                             39

Table18:  How are the photographs presented in the newspaper publication           39                                                     

ABSTRACT

Photographs in news stories can stimulate opinion change, either making a reader love the good advertised, or making the reader hate it.  In view of the foregoing, this study sought to ascertain an “Assessment of Readers Perception on the use of photographs in Nigerian Newspapers.  The population of this study in Enugu metropolis was about 123 but 119 readers participated in the study. The objectives of the study were: To ascertain if the use of photographs in Nigerian newspapers contribute to attracting attention of newspaper readers in Enugu Metropolis; To determine if newspaper readers view photographs in newspaper as space fillers or as aid to readers’ understanding, To ascertain if newspaper readers view photographs in newspaper as aiding credibility to stories or they are used for aesthetic appeal. The survey research design was adopted for the study; data for the study was sourced from primary sources, while data was analyzed using simple tables, frequency percentage.  Source Credibility Theory was used as a model of analysis.  The study found out that readers have different reactions to written words and pictures that are displayed on Nigerian newspapers.  It was subsequently recommended that proper training be given to journalist to enhance their competence in the field of practice, placement of photograph should represent the idea contained in the text and the Nigerian Press Council (NPC) should investigate obstacles to the flow of information on print media, ethical and professional standards in the media must be upheld. 

CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

1.1 Background of the study

For many years, photography has played an increasingly important role in the various media of mass communication that use visual messages to disseminate information (i.e. books, newspapers, magazine, film, television; and the internet – based media) (Ijeh, 2015).  Photographs have been known to greatly stimulate public interest in current events and human angle stories presented by the visual media of mass communication, and have also made tremendous contributions to the civilization and advancement of mankind (Ezekiel & Ezekiel, 2007).

The power of photographs in mass communication stems from the common knowledge that photographs are more powerful than words in message dissemination hence the dictum; “A picture can speak more than a thousand words”.  This is because photographs speak a universal language and are better able to elicit the same emotions from people on different sides of languages and educational divides (Ezekiel & Ezikiel, 2007; Fasheke 2004).

In addition to creating a greater emotional response, photographs are used to capture a reader’s attention to an article. Visual images are the gateway to a news story. Communication professor at the University of Oklahoma, Michael Pfau, claims that people do not merely pick up newspapers and magazines and start reading.  Rather, they look at them, check the headlines and photographs to determine which stories they would like to read (Pfau, 2006). In previous research, eye-tracking software has been used to determine which articles are read first, proving that a reader begins their perusal of a newspaper drawn to the most striking features – typically the headlines and photographs. According to (Pfau, 2006), readers are more likely to view a photograph, first before reading a text.  However, he noted that combining both text and photograph makes it three times more likely that at least some of the text will be read. He also noted that previous research with an eye-tracking device has also proven that readers are drawn to larger photos over smaller ones, and color images over black and white versions.

ASSESSMENT OF READERS PERCEPTION OF THE USE OF PHOTOGRAPHS IN NIGERIAN NEWSPAPERS