Political Attack Ads and Lincoln’s 1864 Campaign

What would the 1864 presidential campaign have looked like if Abe Lincoln and Gen. George B. McClellan had used today’s deceptive campaign techniques and video attack ads? Lincoln was reelected 150 years ago on Nov. 8, and his campaign against McClellan has been reimagined by the political literacy website FlackCheck.org through a video timeline of ads that use humor, parody, and contemporary deceptive approaches.

A handgun being fired

Parents Become Less Sensitive to Violence and Sex in Movies: Study

Parents can become desensitized to violence and sex in movies after watching only a few scenes with disturbing content, according to a new study published in Pediatrics that was conducted by researchers at the Annenberg Public Policy Center. The study comes as scenes of sex and violence become more prevalent in movies aimed at youth. A 2013 study in Pediatrics from APPC researchers showed that the amount of violence in PG-13 movies tripled in the most popular movies since 1985.

Annenberg Public Policy Center to study the Science of Science Communication

To mark its 20th anniversary, the Annenberg Public Policy Center of the University of Pennsylvania is opening a new area of study, the Science of Science Communication, to investigate how scientific evidence can be more effectively conveyed to the public. APPC also announced that FactCheck.org, which has focused on political speech, has received funding from the Stanton Foundation to expand its mission to include monitoring the use and misuse of scientific evidence.

Overcoming the Effects of Selectively Presented Scientific Information in Partisan Media

Scientists can minimize the likelihood that their message will be rejected in a politically polarized environment by avoiding advocacy, relying on trusted sources, and inviting the audience to understand the evidence that justifies the scientific conclusion, according to a new study by Annenberg Public Policy Center researchers published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. It showed that conservatives were able to draw the correct inferences about the downward trend in the Arctic sea ice despite exposure to a misleading Fox News report.

Eugene Kiely, Director of FactCheck.org

FactCheck.org collaborates with U.S. Vote to provide political news to voters

WASHINGTON, D.C. -- U.S. Vote Foundation (US Vote) and the nonpartisan site FactCheck.org have developed an alliance through which FactCheck.org will provide relevant, timely and accurate political information to voters who create an individual “My Voter Account” on the US Vote website. The project, supported by the Democracy Fund, was created to make it easy for voters to find unbiased, fact-checked news from within their private Voter Accounts.

R.I. Gov. Lincoln Chafee talks about politics in a polarized world

Rhode Island Gov. Lincoln D. Chafee met with students and faculty at the Annenberg School for Communication on Thursday, Oct. 2, and spoke about navigating an increasingly polarized political environment. Chafee, who has been Governor since 2011, previously served as a Republican U.S. Senator representing Rhode Island from 1999-2007. He subsequently became an Independent, and in 2013 announced that he would register as a Democrat.