This invited commentary reviews the survey research described in "Examining the Relationship between Media use and Aggression, Sexuality, and Body Image" and situates this research within the recent history of entertainment media regulation.

Key Take Away Points

  • Northup's work corroborates recent work examining the correlations between emerging adults' media use and attitudes regarding aggression and sexuality
  • Based on Northup's results, the field needs to examine media influences in acknowledgment of content-specific differences.
  • Audiences also should not be treated with broad brushstrokes, but rather be examined in light of their demographic and socioeconomic differences.
  • Overbroad treatment of both media and audiences might lead to overbroad policy governing media content.

Author Biography

Francesca Dillman Carpentier is an associate professor at the School of Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Her teaching interests include mass media theory and effects, television production, and telecommunication policy. Her research questions focus on how we process mass-mediated messages, with additional focus on understanding what motivates us to select certain media offerings over others. Dillman Carpentier’s academic work has been published in a number of journals inside and outside of the communication discipline, for example Media Psychology, Journalism & Mass Communication Quarterly, International Journal on Media Management, Journal of School Violence, and Personality and Individual Differences. She has also written television scripts for children’s and educational videos.