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The agenda-setting theory refers to theory that the news media have a large influence on audiences by their choice of what stories to consider newsworthy and how much prominence and space to give them.
According to the agenda-setting theory, propounded by Maxwell McCombs and Donald Shaw in the 1970s, media set the agenda for public opinion by highlighting certain issues. It helps the public to understand the pervasive role of the media. The theory necessitates salience transfer, which is the ability of the news media to transfer issues of importance from their news media agendas to public agendas.