Misreporting and vicarious political participation at the local level

Thomas J. Volgy, John E. Schwarz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


The paper provides a method for examining the differences between people who actively participate in politics as contrasted with those who are not participants, and those who misreport their level of participation. Application of this method shows that the participants and the misreporters share numerous characteristics that set them apart from nonparticipants. The main distinguishing characteristic of the misreporters is their significantly higher exposure to television. The results lend support to the theory that one effect of television is to depress routine forms of political participation, while simultaneously distorting people's perception of their actual participation in political life.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)757-765
Number of pages9
JournalPublic Opinion Quarterly
Issue number4
StatePublished - 1984

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Communication
  • History
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • General Social Sciences
  • History and Philosophy of Science


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