Dr Paul Mason of the School of Journalism, Media and Cultural Studies at Cardiff University posted to the European-Group-Criminology listserv to let us know about a new publication from the Prison Media Monitoring Unit:
The first bulletin (February 2006) of the Prison Media Monitoring Unit is now available for download. The Unit scrutinizes British media coverage of prison and prisoners. Its monthly bulletins highlight errors, misinformation and distortion about prison issues which, the Unit believes, may have a significant effect on government policy and public attitudes towards prison, punishment and social control. Bulletins are based upon data collected from the UK’s national daily newspapers.
The Bulletin itself provides a few more details of what you can expect to find in this, and future, reports:
PMMU Bulletins are based upon data collected from the nineteen UK national newspapers using the online database Lexis Nexis. The following search terms were used: ‘prison’, ‘prisoner’, ’jail’, ‘punishment’, ‘inmate’ and ‘detention’. The terms were applied to three Lexis Nexis criteria – words appearing in the headline, a major mention or three or more times in the article. Stories were then further sorted to remove any which did not relate to UK prisons, coded for eleven variables and processed through SPSS software. The results of this analysis form the statistical section of the bulletin. Stories were also explored using discourse analysis[…].
The website is here, from where you can download the bulletin as a PDF file.