“People should get their booster”: Stance towards Covid vaccination in news and academic blogs

Hang Zou, Ken Hyland

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Abstract

Debates around the efficacy and dangers of vaccination have taken on critical importance with the Covid pandemic and WHO naming vaccine hesitancy as a major global health threat. We explore how writers use two types of blog, academic and journalistic, to promote key public health messages around the effectiveness and necessity of Covid-19 vaccinations to a broad, heterogeneous audience. Examining 120 Covid-19 vaccination themed posts from reputable news and academic blog sites, we compare the different ways writers present a stance and take a position towards vaccines and vaccinations in these different interactional contexts. Findings show that both types of bloggers are clearly aware of the need to convey a stance towards their topic and audiences feel entitled to position themselves in relation to vaccination issues, but with different emphases. The study has important implications for how healthcare information is disseminated and persuasion accomplished in these public arenas of discourse.

Original languageEnglish
JournalInternational Journal of Corpus Linguistics
Early online date13 Feb 2024
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 13 Feb 2024

Keywords

  • academic blogs
  • context
  • Covid-19 vaccination
  • news blogs
  • stance

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