Content Sharing in Conflictual Ad-Hoc Twitter Discussions: National Patterns or Universal Trends?

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionResearchpeer-review

3 Scopus citations

Abstract

Recently, the growing role of social network users in content dissemination has brought to life the concept of secondary gatekeeping – selection and republication of content already selected and published by traditional gatekeepers. Secondary gatekeeping is believed to be raising the media in-platform visibility, but it may also have negative effects such as adding to creation of echo chambers and deepening the gaps between conflicting views. Such studies are particularly relevant for emergencies or social conflicts where sharing relevant content may be crucial for lowering social unease. But till today the nature of secondary gatekeeping remains highly understudied. We have conducted a comparative study of three ad-hoc Twitter discussions on heated ethnic/racial conflicts in the USA (Ferguson riots), Germany (Köln mass abuse), and Russia (Biryulyovo anti-migrant bashings) to assess the patterns of content sharing by active discussants. We used vocabulary-based web crawling and human coding of over 1,000 tweets in randomized samples. Our results show that, in all cases, there’s weak but significant correlation between the type of user and his/her attitude to minority with the attitudes expressed in content, while it is not always true that users prefer the same gatekeeper type, e.g. online or social media. As difference between individual users remains statistically significant, this may mean that the nature of heated ad-hoc discussions facilitates formation of ‘individual-level filter bubbles’ in addition to bigger echo chambers.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationDigital Transformation and Global Society - 2nd International Conference, DTGS 2017, Revised Selected Papers
PublisherSpringer Nature
Pages3-15
Number of pages13
Volume745
ISBN (Print)9783319697833
DOIs
StatePublished - 2017
Event2nd International Conference on Digital Transformation and Global Society, DTGS 2017 - St. Petersburg, Russian Federation
Duration: 20 Jun 201722 Jun 2017

Publication series

NameCommunications in Computer and Information Science
Volume745
ISSN (Print)1865-0929

Conference

Conference2nd International Conference on Digital Transformation and Global Society, DTGS 2017
CountryRussian Federation
CitySt. Petersburg
Period20/06/1722/06/17

Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Science(all)
  • Mathematics(all)

Keywords

  • Content sharing
  • Inter-ethnic conflict
  • Online discussions
  • Secondary gatekeeping
  • Twitter

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