Michael D Slater

Michael D Slater
The Ohio State University | OSU · School of Communication

Ph.D.

About

205
Publications
73,118
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10,790
Citations

Publications

Publications (205)
Article
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Objectives Earlier initiation of alcohol use and problematic drinking among adolescents are linked with adverse health outcomes. Exposure to alcohol advertisements is associated with drinking among adolescents, but the association between the attitudes toward alcohol advertisements and drinking behaviors is understudied. We evaluated the associatio...
Article
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Although alcohol increases risk of cancer, awareness of alcohol-related cancer risks is low. Alcohol use is prevalent among young adults, and understanding factors associated with awareness and perceptions of alcohol-related cancer risks in this group is critical for cancer prevention efforts. We examined the demographic, tobacco, and alcohol relat...
Article
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Exposure to tobacco advertisements is associated with initiation of tobacco use among youth. The mechanisms underlying this association are less clear. We estimated longitudinal associations between youths’ cognitive and affective responses to advertisements for cigarettes, e-cigarettes, and smokeless tobacco (SLT) and initiation of these products....
Article
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The present study examines the self-reported impact of viewing more versus less eudaimonic Hollywood films using a retrospective study design. We investigate the role of three novel constructs in understanding people’s lived experience of eudaimonic narratives. These include two outcomes: acceptance of the human condition, or the perception that a...
Article
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Background: Mass media messages have the potential to reduce alcohol-related harm through increasing support for alcohol-control policies. Objectives: In Study 1, we experimentally examined the incidental effects of alcohol mention in news articles about accidents and crime and found evidence that messages mentioning alcohol as a causal factor in t...
Article
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Using the mediated wisdom of experience (MWOE) theoretical framework, this study examines how eudaimonic testimonials versus comparable didactic presentations, and the presence or absence of modeling target behavior, influence death acceptance and intentions to converse about end-of-life care preferences. Effects for testimonials on attitudes and b...
Article
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Background The HEALing Communities Study (HCS) is testing whether the Communities that Heal (CTH) intervention can decrease opioid overdose deaths through the implementation of evidence-based practices (EBPs) in highly impacted communities. One of the CTH intervention components is a series of communications campaigns to promote the implementation...
Article
Rationale Many people overestimate the amount of alcohol that increases their risk of harm and so may not perceive any need to change their drinking behaviour. Several countries have developed low-risk drinking guidelines, yet awareness of these guidelines remains low. Furthermore, mass media campaigns about alcohol-related harms may have limited i...
Article
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Background Opioid overdose deaths remain high in the U.S. Despite having effective interventions to prevent overdose deaths, there are numerous barriers that impede their adoption. The primary aim of the HEALing Communities Study (HCS) is to determine the impact of an intervention consisting of community-engaged, data-driven selection, and implemen...
Article
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Objectives: Conduct a head-to-head experimental test of responses to alcohol harm reduction advertisements developed by alcohol industry Social Aspects/Public Relations Organisations (SAPROs) versus those developed by public health (PH) agencies. We hypothesised that, on average, SAPRO advertisements would be less effective at generating motivatio...
Article
The extended elaboration likelihood model (E‐ELM) builds upon the elaboration likelihood model by defining involvement with messages differentially across genres. Such a view is able to account for a wider variety of message processing motivations and subsequent persuasive outcomes. Specifically, it provides insights into audience processing of mes...
Article
Climate Matters is a localized climate change reporting resources program developed to support TV weathercasters across the United States. Developed as a pilot test in one media market in 2010, it launched nationwide in 2013; in the Fall of 2019 more than 797 weathercasters were participating in the program. In this paper we present evidence of the...
Article
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The reinforcing spirals model (RSM) describes the role of communication (mediated and interpersonal) in how socialization, attitudes, and social identities are formed, reinforced, and/or sustained in the face of competing perspectives. The RSM proposes that people tend to select communication sources and content that reinforces their beliefs and so...
Article
Motivated reasoning in response to disconfirming science information presents a challenging barrier to science communication. This article presents a novel approach to emphasis framing, in which functionally equivalent information is framed using ideologically consistent values and tailored to the audiences. In contrast to traditional framing appro...
Article
Objectives: The tobacco industry has a history of making "natural" claims in advertisements. We report how viewing advertisements with such claims affected what adolescents found memorable. Methods: Adolescent boys (N = 1220; 11-16 years old) were randomly assigned to view a Natural American Spirit (NAS) or other brand cigarette advertisement, a...
Article
The homophily principle, that perceived similarities among people produce positive reactions, is a cross-cultural, global phenomenon. This study aimed to test the prediction that photographs that depict models similar to the target population improve health communication by increasing perceived identification in three racial/ethnic populations. Thr...
Article
Objective Blu’s ‘Something Better’ advertising campaign ran in popular print magazines in 2017. The campaign included advertisements with fake warnings conveying positive messages, which mimicked the Food and Drug Administration (FDA)’s warning requirements for electronic cigarette (e-cigarette) advertisements that took effect in 2018. We report ad...
Article
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Insecure attachment places enduring limitations on one’s ability to satisfy important intrinsic needs. An increasing body of literature suggests that such barriers may motivate engagement with stories such as absorption into fictional worlds, sharing experiences and forming relationships with characters, and even pursuing vicarious satisfaction of...
Article
Introduction: Media tobacco and alcohol portrayals encourage adolescent substance use. Preventing adolescent initiation with these substances is critical, as they contribute to leading causes of morbidity and mortality in the United States. Television tobacco and alcohol portrayals have not been examined for more than 7 years. This study analyzed...
Article
Objective: We examined website formats to increase smokers' recognition of harmful and potentially harmful constituents (HPHCs) in cigarettes. Methods: Adult, daily smokers (N = 279) were randomized to view a brief, single-page study website showing HPHC names and uses. The intervention site was tailored + interactive, labeled by cigarette brand...
Article
The homophily principle that perceived similarities among people produce positive reactions is a cross-cultural, global phenomenon. The prediction that photographs depicting models similar to the target population improve health communication was tested. Three nationally-representative samples (n = 1,796) of adults who are disabled, seniors, or con...
Article
Rumors pose a significant challenge to officials combatting a public health crisis. The flow of unsubstantiated and often inaccurate information can dilute the effects of more accurate messaging. Understanding why rumors thrive in this context is a crucial first step to constraining them. We propose a novel mechanism for explaining rumor acceptance...
Article
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We propose that the dark triad of personality predicts how recipients respond to eudaimonic narratives (stories dealing with purpose in life, the human condition, and human virtue). Matched eudaimonic or non-eudaimonic videos were presented via random assignment. The more individuals lack empathy and organize their world around self-promotion – ref...
Article
Purpose: Research indicates that tobacco marketing contributes to higher pro-tobacco attitudes and behaviors among adolescents, but no studies have been able to assess the impact of real-world tobacco marketing exposures in real-time. The purpose of this study was to examine the magnitude and impact of tobacco marketing exposure on adolescents usi...
Article
There is growing concern about the polarizing impact of citizens primarily choosing sources of political information consistent with their existing partisan perspective. While research has begun providing answers about the consequences, questions remain about what factors drive such selective use of political media. This study conceptualizes partis...
Conference Paper
Background: Although 70% of the alcohol disease burden is due to long-term harms (LTHs), Australia has lacked national investment in public health education interventions to inform people of these harms. Objective: Investigate awareness of alcohol-related LTHs among a representative sample of Australian adult drinkers. Method: Data were collecte...
Article
Objectives: In the U.S., print advertisements for smokeless tobacco (SLT) feature a large black-and-white text warning covering 20% of the advertisement space. Cigarette and e-cigarette advertisements feature a small warning covering approximately 4% of advertisement space. We explored how warning size affects adolescent boys' spontaneous recollec...
Article
Interest in the meaningful sides of media entertainment has blossomed over the last decade, with numerous scholars examining how certain media content can enhance social good and well-being. Because social scientific work in this area is relatively new and is rapidly evolving, numerous conceptualizations of meaningful media experiences have been in...
Article
Aims: To compare the immediate effects on drinkers of television advertisements focusing upon short- versus long-term harms with and without low-risk drinking guidelines. Design: Between-participants on-line experiment, with random assignment to view: (a) alcohol product advertisements (ALC control); (b) advertisements unrelated to alcohol (NON-...
Article
Background: Previous studies have examined what adolescents find appealing in tobacco and alcohol advertisements and how different themes in advertisements are used to manipulate consumer behaviors. Yet, we know little about the relationship between the themes portrayed in advertisements and youth attitudes towards those themes. Objectives: This...
Chapter
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This chapter explores how being perpetually connected and perpetually online affects experience with narrative. We outline a model for understanding the complex interplay between media multitasking and narrative engagement. We suggest that the relevance of multitasking to the narrative, and the sociality of that multitasking, influence narrative en...
Article
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This experiment, using excerpts from three Hollywood films, indicates that eudaimonic (meaningful) narratives increase willingness to accept delayed rewards (i.e., reduce delay discounting) and acceptance of death, mediated by the effect of eudaimonic narratives on perceived closeness to future self. Our findings provide support for the argument, a...
Conference Paper
Background: There is poor public awareness of low-risk drinking guidelines. Few studies have assessed the potential effectiveness of mass media campaigns that promote drinking guidelines. Method: Data were collected via an online experiment of 3,718 Australian adult drinkers. Participants were randomly assigned to one of six conditions: ads about...
Article
Engagement with narratives and identification with narrative characters is usually conceptualized as occurring during the narrative experience itself. However, much involvement with a story world and narrative characters may occur retrospectively and imaginatively. The present study, using a cross-sectional survey quota-sampled to represent U.S. de...
Article
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We explored how adolescent marijuana edible users differ in regards to marijuana use and related beliefs from marijuana users who do not use edibles. We analyzed California Healthy Kids Survey data collected in one Northern California school district with a racially and ethnically diverse student population. Survey respondents were youth in grades...
Conference Paper
Background: Aside from the success of campaigns to reduce drink-driving, there is limited evidence to date on the effectiveness of alcohol harm reduction campaigns. Aim: Identify existing advertisements with greatest potential to motivate reduced alcohol consumption and identify advertisement features associated with effectiveness. Method: N=2,17...
Article
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Background Public health mass media campaigns may contribute to reducing the health and social burden attributed to alcohol consumption, but little is known about which advertising characteristics have been used, or have been effective, in alcohol harm reduction campaigns to date. As a first step towards encouraging further research to identify the...
Article
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Objectives To improve the effectiveness of alcohol harm reduction mass media campaigns, this study aimed to (1) identify existing advertisements (ads) with greatest potential to motivate reduced alcohol consumption, (2) assess consistency across audience subgroups in ad effectiveness and (3) identify ad features associated with effectiveness. Desi...
Chapter
The reinforcing spirals model (RSM) conceptualizes selective exposure to media and other communication content, and the effects of such content, as part of a larger dynamic process embedded in the social context of the place, the time, and the individual. This model has particular utility for theorizing about the role of media in the development an...
Research
ABSTRACT: Objective: Aside from the success of campaigns to reduce drink-driving, there is limited evidence to date on the effectiveness of more general alcohol harm reduction campaigns. Given the wide range of harms associated with alcohol consumption, the primary aim of the current study was to identify advertisements with the greatest potential...
Article
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Health conditions are sometimes included in entertainment media comedies as a context for and as a source of humor. Food allergies are a typical case in point: They are potentially life-threatening yet may be used in humorous contexts. We conducted a content analysis of food allergies in entertainment media and tested the effects of humorous portra...
Article
Objectives: Electronic nicotine delivery systems (ENDS), or e-cigarettes, are heavily marketed online. The purpose of our study was to perform a systematic identification and evaluation of claims made within ENDS retailer and manufacturer websites, and the legal status of such claims. Methods: We employed a systematic search protocol with popula...
Article
The purpose of this study is to provide process data from campaigns (2009-2010) to improve colorectal cancer (CRC; intervention) screening and fruit and vegetable (F&V; comparison) consumption in 12 Appalachian Ohio counties. County-specific campaigns included one billboard, posters, and articles for local newspapers. Participants in CRC screening...
Article
The temporarily expanding boundaries of the self (TEBOTS) model identifies challenges faced by the self as a fundamental impetus for engagement with mediated narratives. To test how everyday pressures on the self influence enjoyment, appreciation, and immersion into narrative worlds, this study used self-affirmation to alleviate the everyday demand...
Article
Recent research indicates that marijuana-infused food product (i.e., edible) use is becoming nearly as common as smoking marijuana where medical marijuana is available. This study explores edible use among teens. We conducted four focus groups in the San Francisco Bay Area with youth, ages 15-17. The focus groups were divided by gender and whether...
Article
An interest in media effects is in most cases an interest in the effects of various types or instances of media content. The more information that researchers capture about such content, the more meaningful inferences about effects can be. Therefore, approaches to media effects research in which researchers first analyze the content of interest and...
Article
Purpose: To idetify the curret atmosphere of olie sales of Electroic Nicotie Delivery Systems (ENDS) i regards to key health-related ad legal claims beig made ad to aalyze the legal framework for regulatig such claims. Methods: I December 2014, a systematic search protocol was employed with 3 popular search egies usig six terms: 1) e-cigarettes, 2)...
Article
Research on the impact of eudaimonic narrative has begun to identify a variety of psychologically and socially important outcomes. In the present study, we conceptually and operationally distinguish three distinctive responses to eudaimonic narrative: moral elevation, being emotionally moved, and poignancy. We, following work by Hershfield and coll...
Chapter
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Messages are central to human social experience, and pose key conceptual and methodological challenges in the study of communication. In response to these challenges, we outline a systematic approach to conceptualizing, operationalizing, and analyzing messages. At the conceptual level, we distinguish between two core aspects of messages: message va...
Article
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• To describe a partnership of cancer disparities researchers and community members who developed county-specific media campaigns to improve colorectal cancer screening rates and increase fruit and vegetable consumption. • To obtain input from community participants about their experience being featured in the local cancer prevention campaigns. • I...
Article
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Objective. To test the effectiveness of a colorectal cancer (CRC) screening intervention among adults living in Ohio Appalachia. Methods. We conducted a group-randomized trial of a county-level intervention among adults living in 12 Ohio Appalachian counties who received a media campaign and clinic intervention focused on either CRC screening or fr...
Article
Humor is sometimes used in health messages. However, little is known about contingencies under which different types of humor may or may not be effective. This experiment crossed humorous versus nonhumorous and self- versus other-deprecating messages about binge drinking, and tested how differences in personal investment in alcohol use moderates th...
Conference Paper
Background: There is little knowledge about the advertising characteristics of effective alcohol harm prevention campaigns, outside the domain of drink-driving campaigns. As the first step in an NHMRC-funded program of research to test campaign effectiveness, content analysis provided a useful method for describing how public education messages on...
Article
To determine how electronic cigarettes (e-cigarettes) are portrayed in newspaper informative articles and opinion pieces. A content analysis was conducted on 450 articles published in the United States from 1997 to mid-2014 and obtained by a Newsbank search. The articles were reliably coded for overall frame, type of article, first topic and main t...
Article
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This study tests propositions derived from the larger notion that entertainment narratives offer the individual a means by which to alleviate the psychological demands of the self. Specifically, individuals in a state of reduced self-control were expected to experience greater enjoyment, audience response, transportation, and identification during...
Article
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Messages pose fundamental challenges and opportunities for empirical communication research. To address these challenges and opportunities, we distinguish between message variability (the defined and operationalized features of messages in a given study) and message heterogeneity (all message features that are undefined and unmeasured in a given st...
Article
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Research on the impersonal impact hypothesis suggests that news (especially print) coverage of health and safety risks primarily influences perceptions of risk as a societal issue, and not perceptions of personal risk. The authors propose that the impersonal impact of news-impact primarily on concerns about social-level risks-will mediate effects o...
Article
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The reinforcing spirals model (RSM) has two primary purposes. First, the RSM provides a general framework for conceptualizing media use as part of a dynamic, endogenous process combining selective exposure and media effects that may be drawn on by theorists concerned with a variety of social processes and effects. Second, the RSM utilizes a systems...
Article
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A wide variety of motivations for engaging with narratives have been proposed and studied. We propose that underlying these motivations is another, more fundamental motivation. Our premise is that maintenance, defense, and regulation of the personal and social self in daily life are demanding both emotionally and cognitively. Moreover, any individu...
Article
The authors compared local TV news with national TV news in terms of cancer coverage using a nationally representative sample of local nightly TV and national network TV (i.e., ABC, CBS, NBC, and CNN) cancer news stories that aired during 2002 and 2003. Compared with national TV news, local TV cancer stories were (a) much shorter in length, (b) les...
Article
Young adult smokers have the highest smoking prevalence among all US age groups but are least likely to use evidence-based cessation counseling or medication to quit. Use and effectiveness of nicotine patch were explored in a randomized trial evaluating smoking cessation interventions with this population. Smokers aged 18 to 30 (n = 3094) were recr...
Article
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Preventing intimate partner violence (IPV) is a public health priority. An important component of designing prevention programs is developing an understanding of how media portrayals of health issues influence public opinion and policy. To better understand the ways in which media images may be informing our understanding of IPV, this study content...
Article
The symposium articles address a variety of assumptions concerning interventions in which youth create prevention messaging. These articles help confirm that young people left to themselves are likely to engage in self-persuasion through such message creation but are less likely to create messages persuasive to others. However, with youth working c...
Article
We examine how viewers' narrative involvement is impacted by a character's membership in a highly stigmatized group. In particular, we explore how perspective‐taking with a character, a dimension of the identification construct (J. Cohen, 2001), influences in‐group/out‐group perception. Participants viewed 1 of 2 edited versions of the film Sherryb...
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Previous arguments that content analyses provide the descriptive foundation for media effects research (McLeod & Reeves, 198017. McLeod , J. M. and Reeves , B. 1980. “On the nature of mass media effects”. In Television and social behavior: Beyond violence and children, Edited by: Withey , S. B. and R. P. , Abeles . 17–54. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sag...
Article
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Portrayals of physicians on medical dramas have been the subject of research attention. However, such research has not examined portrayals of interactions between physicians and patients, has not compared physician portrayals on medical dramas versus on medical reality programs, and has not fully examined portrayals of physicians who are members of...
Article
An experiment investigated emotional reactions to news on policy support. Stimuli were selected from a nationally representative sample of local crime/accident news, and a nationally representative online panel of U.S. adults. Stories were manipulated to mention or not mention the role of alcohol. Anger elicited by stories increased blame of indivi...
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The present study tests prospective effects of music-related media content (from television, Internet, and magazines) on youth alcohol, cigarette, and marijuana use initiation. Indirect effects through association with substance-using peers were tested in a 4-wave longitudinal data set (2,729 middle school students for the alcohol model, 2,716 stud...
Article
Prior research has shown that discrete emotions, notably anger and fear, can explain effects of news articles on health and alcohol-control policy support. This study advances prior work by coding expressed emotional responses to messages (as opposed to directly manipulated emotions or forced responses), incorporating and controlling for central th...
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We propose a framework for understanding how quantitative researchers typically seek to contribute to theory and generalizable knowledge in communication, noting some of the strengths and weaknesses of the various approaches typically used. The major approaches are described, and a content analysis of articles from four issues each of Journal of Co...
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Prior research has shown that the proportion of news stories about violent crimes, car crashes, and other unintended injuries that mention the possible contributing role of alcohol is far lower than the actual proportion of alcohol-related crimes and unintended injuries. An experiment was conducted to test the hypothesis that inclusion of such ment...