Journal of Media and Communication Studies
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Article Number - 052371B65959

Vol.9(6), pp. 42-50 , September 2017
DOI: 10.5897/JMCS2017.0574
ISSN: 2141-2545

Full Length Research Paper

Readability and political discourse: An analysis of press releases of Ghanaian political parties

William Kodom Gyasi
  • William Kodom Gyasi
  • Department of Communication Studies, University of Cape Coast, Ghana.
  • Google Scholar

 Received: 25 April 2017  Accepted: 29 June 2017  Published: 30 September 2017

Copyright © 2017 Author(s) retain the copyright of this article.
This article is published under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License 4.0

Press releases have enormous influence on public opinion since the media sets agenda for public discussion. Thus, press releases are essential communication tool for political parties. For press releases to be effective, however, they must be readable. Therefore, the main objective of this study  was to evaluate the readability of news releases of the two major political parties (National Democratic Congress (NDC), New Patriotic Party (NPP)) in Ghana. Seventy press releases (32 were NDC releases whiles 38 were from the NPP) from the NDC and NPP were selected by convenience sampling. Flesch readability indexes were used to compute readability scores. Frequencies, measures of central tendencies, and one sample T-test using bootstrapping, were used to describe readability of the press releases. In addition, independent sample T-test was used to compare differences in readability between NPP and NDC news releases. The results revealed that news releases by the two political parties were generally ‘difficult’ to read, compared to standard readability of public documents. This was the case since a person must have attained, on the average, over 13 years of formal education in order to be able to read and understand the news releases of the NDC (X ̅=13.29; σ=1.85) while it required about 12 years of formal education was required, on the average, to read and understand the news releases from the NPP (X ̅=12.22; σ=2.63). In addition, the results showed that there was no significant difference in readability between NPP and NDC news releases. It is recommended that the political parties consider the readability of the news releases before disseminating them to the public.

Key words: Readability, political discourse, press releases, media.

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APA Gyasi, W. K. (2017). Readability and political discourse: An analysis of press releases of Ghanaian political parties. Journal of Media and Communication Studies, 9(6), 42-50.
Chicago William Kodom Gyasi. "Readability and political discourse: An analysis of press releases of Ghanaian political parties." Journal of Media and Communication Studies 9, no. 6 (2017): 42-50.
MLA William Kodom Gyasi. "Readability and political discourse: An analysis of press releases of Ghanaian political parties." Journal of Media and Communication Studies 9.6 (2017): 42-50.
DOI 10.5897/JMCS2017.0574

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