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(Not) the Twitter election: The dynamics of the #ausvotes conversation in relation to the Australian media ecology

By Jean E. Burgess and Axel Bruns

Abstract

This paper draws on a larger study of the uses of Australian user-created content and online social networks to examine the relationships between professional journalists and highly engaged Australian users of political media within the wider media ecology, with a particular focus on Twitter. It uses an analysis of topic based conversation networks using the #ausvotes hashtag on Twitter around the 2010 federal election to explore the key themes and issues addressed by this Twitter community during the campaign, and finds that Twitter users were largely commenting on the performance of mainstream media and politicians rather than engaging in direct political discussion. The often critical attitude of Twitter users towards the political establishment mirrors the approach of news and political bloggers to political actors, nearly a decade earlier, but the increasing adoption of Twitter as a communication tool by politicians, journalists, and everyday users alike makes a repetition of the polarisation experienced at that time appear unlikely

Topics: 190301 Journalism Studies, 200102 Communication Technology and Digital Media Studies, social media, Twitter, political media, election
Publisher: Taylor & Francis
Year: 2012
DOI identifier: 10.1080/17512786.2012.663610
OAI identifier: oai:eprints.qut.edu.au:49353

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