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Political Polarization

2018-03-27 19:38:54.58471+00 by Dan Lyke 2 comments

Exposure to Opposing Views can Increase Political Polarization: Evidence from a Large-Scale Field Experiment on Social Media:

There is mounting concern that social media sites contribute to political po- larization by creating “echo chambers” that insulate people from opposingviews about current events. We surveyed a large sample of Democrats andRepublicans who visit Twitter at least three times each week about a range ofsocial policy issues. One week later, we randomly assigned respondents to atreatment condition in which they were offered financial incentives to follow a Twitter bot for one month that exposed them to messages produced by elected officials, organizations, and other opinion leaders with opposing political ideologies. Respondents were re-surveyed at the end of the month to measurethe effect of this treatment, and at regular intervals throughout the study pe-riod to monitor treatment compliance. We find that Republicans who followed a liberal Twitter bot became substantially more conservative post-treatment,and Democrats who followed a conservative Twitter bot became slightly more liberal post-treatment. These findings have important implications for the interdisciplinary literature on political polarization as well as the emerging field of computational social science.

[ related topics: Politics moron Journalism and Media ]

comments in ascending chronological order (reverse):

#Comment Re: Political Polarization made: 2018-03-28 15:59:36.917544+00 by: Larry Burton

I think the higher the quantity of exposure the lower the quality becomes. At some point the rhetoric gets so intense that you know people are just making stuff up which starts to turn your personal opinions into the opposite direction.

#Comment Re: Political Polarization made: 2018-03-30 13:35:28.601238+00 by: Jack William Bell

I'll admit I don't like the idea of a 'emerging field of computational social science' at all. But I haven't examined why yet.

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