Washington: The better a politician looks, the more his chances of appearing on television, says a new study.
Dr. Yariv Tsfati, Dana Markowitz Elfassi and Dr. Israel Waismel-Manor surveyed the coverage of all members of the 16th Israeli Knesset on Israeli television channels 1, 2 and 10.
In parallel they had the appearance of each member of Knesset -based on their official website photos - rated by Dutch students who were not familiar with the personalities.
The results showed that the more attractive politicians are covered in the television news more than the less attractive politicians.
“Seeing as there are those politicians who enjoy and seek out media coverage more than others, we wanted to examine whether motivation and effort to achieve media exposure are the factors that actually determine the amount of coverage.
“But this study has revealed that these are not mediating factors for physical appearance, and attractiveness has an effect regardless,” the researchers noted.
“Nowadays, publicists and campaigners, as well as politicians themselves, are aware of the importance of media skills. Our study demonstrates how being attentive to outward appearance must be included in these skills, seeing as it can increase the politician’s exposure through the media,” the researchers concluded.
The find is published in the International Journal of Press/Politics.
First Published: Friday, July 09, 2010, 14:30