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Coding Media/Newspaper Articles with FM

Question asked by NinoLanderer on Dec 15, 2011
Latest reply on Dec 15, 2011 by revmk


Coding Media/Newspaper Articles with FM



I am new to FM, so apologies for the probably rather basic questions.

I use FM for the coding of newspaper articles. I am using a customized layout, where I create a new record for every newspaper article I code. This allows me to copy the article directly into one field and to then read and code it in FM.

Among other variables I code, I identify (in a pre-determined drop-down menu) every political actor that is mentioned in the article. Furthermore, I want to code whether this political actor can be linked to one of 6 different pre-determined policy issues (e.g. energy, economy, etc.). Finally, I want to code how the political actor judges on this particular policy issue (positive, negative, neutral, or no attribution at all).

So, for every article (=FM record), 1 or more political actors are identified. For every political actor, 1 policy issue is identified. And if possible, for this actor-issue relationship, an attribution is identified. This could look as the following (for a particular record):

actor1 --> policy issue 3 --> positive attribution

actor2 --> policy issue 5 --> neutral attribution

actor3 --> policy issue 2 --> no attribution identifiable

actor4 --> no policy issue identifiable (and therefore no attribution identifiable)

Here are my problems:

  1. How can I link the variables "political actor", "policy issue" and "attribution" in FM, so that I can exploit the links between them not only within one article, but within the entire set of articles. Do I have to create different tables that I link somehow together? And how can I do that?
  2. Since the number of actors per article varies considerably (between 1 and 10 or more), what would you suggest in order to have a layout solution that is both not too difficult to create and easy to manage for data analysis afterwards?

I also added a screenshot in order to make my problem as clear as possible.

Thank you very much in advance for your comments & suggestions!!