Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Home
Hostname: page-component-558cb97cc8-5s46l Total loading time: 0.356 Render date: 2022-10-07T17:30:16.782Z Has data issue: true Feature Flags: { "shouldUseShareProductTool": true, "shouldUseHypothesis": true, "isUnsiloEnabled": true, "useRatesEcommerce": false, "displayNetworkTab": true, "displayNetworkMapGraph": false, "useSa": true } hasContentIssue true

Media Bias against Foreign Firms as a Veiled Trade Barrier: Evidence from Chinese Newspapers

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  13 June 2018

SUNG EUN KIM*
Affiliation:
Korea University
*
Sung Eun Kim is an Assistant Professor of Political Science, Department of Political Science and International Relations, Korea University, 145 Anam-ro, Seongbuk-gu, Seoul, Korea, 02841 (sung_kim@korea.edu).

Abstract

While the rules of international trade regimes prevent governments from employing protectionist instruments, governments continue to seek out veiled means of supporting their national industries. This article argues that the news media can serve as one channel for governments to favor domestic industries. Focusing on media coverage of auto recalls in China, I reveal a systematic bias against foreign automakers in those newspapers under strict government control. I further analyze subnational reporting patterns, exploiting variation in the level of regional government interest in the automobile industry. The analysis suggests that the media’s home bias is driven by the government’s protectionist interests but rules out the alternative hypothesis that home bias simply reflects the nationalist sentiment of readers. I show that this home bias in news coverage has meaningful impact on actual consumer behavior, combining automobile sales data and information on recall-related web searches.

Type
Research Article
Copyright
Copyright © American Political Science Association 2018 

Access options

Get access to the full version of this content by using one of the access options below. (Log in options will check for institutional or personal access. Content may require purchase if you do not have access.)

Footnotes

I thank Andrew Cheon, Shigeo Hirano, Xian Huang, Dong Jung Kim, Florence Larocque, Yotam Margalit, Tamar Mitts, Andrew Nathan, Krzysztof Pelc, Pablo Pinto, Subhasish Ray, Johannes Urpelainen, Joonseok Yang, Boliang Zhu, three anonymous reviewers, and the journal’s editor for their useful comments. I also benefited from feedback from seminar participants at Columbia, LSE, NUS, NYU, NYU-Abu Dhabi, UPenn, Yale, and Yale-NUS and conference participants at APSA, IPES, and MPSA. I thank Kay Key Teo and Lee Shu Hui Jesslene for their excellent research assistance. All errors are my own. Replication files are available at the American Political Science Review Dataverse: https://doi.org/10.7910/DVN/JSR0OE.

References

REFERENCES

Besley, Timothy, and Prat, Andrea. 2006. “Handcuffs for the Grabbing Hand? Media Capture and Government Accountability.” American Economic Review 96 (3): 720–36.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Chang, Pi-Chuan, Galley, Michel, and Manning, Christopher D.. 2008. “Optimizing Chinese Word Segmentation for Machine Translation Performance.” In Proceedings of the Third Workshop on Statistical Machine Translation. Association for Computational Linguistics, pp. 224–32.Google Scholar
Chaudoin, Stephen, Kucik, Jeffrey, and Pelc, Krzysztof. 2016. “Do WTO Disputes Actually Increase Trade?International Studies Quarterly 60 (2): 294306.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Davis, Christina L., and Bermeo, Sarah Blodgett. 2009. “Who Files? Developing Country Participation in GATT/WTO Adjudication.” The Journal of Politics 71 (3): 1033–49.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Djankov, Simeon, McLiesh, Caralee, Nenova, Tatiana, and Shleifer, Andrei. 2003. “Who Owns the Media?Journal of Law and Economics 46 (2): 341–82.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Friebel, Guido, and Heinz, Matthias. 2014. “Media Slant against Foreign Owners: Downsizing.” Journal of Public Economics 120: 97106.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Gentzkow, Matthew, and Shapiro, Jesse M.. 2010. “What Drives Media Slant? Evidence from U.S. Daily Newspapers.” Econometrica 78 (1): 3571.Google Scholar
Gerth, Karl. 2012. “A New Brand of Chinese Economic Nationalism: From China Made to China Managed.” In Globalization and Economic Nationalism in Asia. Oxford: Oxford University Press, pp. 202–23.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Grafton, Steven M., Hoffer, George E., and Reilly, Robert J.. 1981. “Testing the Impact of Recalls on the Demand for Automobiles.” Economic Inquiry 19 (4): 694703.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Kim, Moonhawk. 2016. “Enduring Trade Disputes: Disguised Protectionism and Duration and Recurrence of International Trade Disputes.” The Review of International Organizations 11 (3): 283310.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Kono, Daniel Y. 2006. “Optimal Obfuscation: Democracy and Trade Policy Transparency.” American Political Science Review 100 (3): 369–84.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Kono, Daniel Y., and Rickard, Stephanie J.. 2014. “Buying National: Democracy, Public Procurement, and International Trade.” International Interactions 40 (5): 657–82.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Ku, Lun-Wei, and Chen, Hsin-Hsi. 2007. “Mining Opinions from the Web: Beyond Relevance Retrieval.” Journal of the American Society for Information Science and Technology 58 (12): 1838–50.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Maggi, Giovanni. 1999. “The Role of Multilateral Institutions in International Trade Cooperation.” American Economic Review 89 (1): 190214.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Mansfield, Edward D., Milner, Helen V., and Rosendorff, B. Peter. 2002. “Why Democracies Cooperate More: Electoral Control and International Trade Agreements.” International Organization 56 (3): 477513.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Mansfield, Edward D., and Busch, Marc L.. 1995. “The Political Economy of Nontariff Barriers: A Cross-National Analysis.” International Organization 49 (4): 723–49.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Milner, Helen V., and Kubota, Keiko. 2005. “Why the Move to Free Trade? Democracy and Trade Policy in the Developing Countries.” International Organization 59 (1): 107–43.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Naoi, Megumi. 2009. “Shopping for Protection: The Politics of Choosing Trade Instruments in a Partially Legalized World.” International Studies Quarterly 53 (2): 421–44.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Oh, Seung-Youn. 2013. “Fragmented Liberalization in the Chinese Automotive Industry: The Political Logic behind Beijing Hyundai’s Success in the Chinese Market.” The China Quarterly 216: 920–45.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Qin, Bei, Strömberg, David, and Wu, Yanhui. 2016. “Media Bias in China.” Working Paper.Google Scholar
Rickard, Stephanie J. 2012. “A Non-Tariff Protectionist Bias in Majoritarian Politics: Government Subsidies and Electoral Institutions.” International Studies Quarterly 56 (4): 777–85.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Rickard, Stephanie J., and Kono, Daniel Y.. 2014. “Think Globally, Buy Locally: International Agreements and Government Procurement.” The Review of International Organizations 9 (3): 333–52.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Roberts, Margaret E., Stewart, Brandon M., Tingley, Dustin, Lucas, Christopher, Leder-Luis, Jetson, Gadarian, Shana Kushner, Albertson, Bethany, and Rand, David G.. 2014. “Structural Topic Models for Open-Ended Survey Responses.” American Journal of Political Science 58 (4): 1064–82.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Staiger, Robert W. 2012. “Non-Tariff Measures and the WTO.” World Trade Organization Staff Working Paper ERSD-2012-01.Google Scholar
Stockmann, Daniela. 2013. Media Commercialization and Authoritarian Rule in China. New York: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
Truex, Rory. 2016. “Bias and Trust in Authoritarian Media.” Princeton University Working Paper.Google Scholar
Zhang, Hongzhong, Zhou, Shuhua, and Shen, Bin. 2014. “Public Trust: A Comprehensive Investigation on Perceived Media Credibility in China.” Asian Journal of Communication 24 (2): 158–72.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Link
Supplementary material: PDF

Kim supplementary material

Online Appendix

Download Kim supplementary material(PDF)
PDF 658 KB
7
Cited by

Save article to Kindle

To save this article to your Kindle, first ensure coreplatform@cambridge.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about saving to your Kindle.

Note you can select to save to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be saved to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.

Find out more about the Kindle Personal Document Service.

Media Bias against Foreign Firms as a Veiled Trade Barrier: Evidence from Chinese Newspapers
Available formats
×

Save article to Dropbox

To save this article to your Dropbox account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you used this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your Dropbox account. Find out more about saving content to Dropbox.

Media Bias against Foreign Firms as a Veiled Trade Barrier: Evidence from Chinese Newspapers
Available formats
×

Save article to Google Drive

To save this article to your Google Drive account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you used this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your Google Drive account. Find out more about saving content to Google Drive.

Media Bias against Foreign Firms as a Veiled Trade Barrier: Evidence from Chinese Newspapers
Available formats
×
×

Reply to: Submit a response

Please enter your response.

Your details

Please enter a valid email address.

Conflicting interests

Do you have any conflicting interests? *