A sound bite is a short segment of a speech (or other utterance) that is played over and over in the media. A good example of the sentence you quoted can be seen in the campaign by Howard Dean for president of the US. Although Dean was considered a leading candidate, he ended one speech in a loud and shrill manner. After this ten-second sound bite was played and replayed thousands of times in the media, Dean was preceived as a screaming lunatic, and his chances of being elected president were over.
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