Faculty Publications

Title

Social media, participation, and attitudes: Does social media drive polarization?

Document Type

Article

Journal/Book/Conference Title

(R)evolutionizing Political Communication through Social Media

First Page

1

Last Page

21

Abstract

A wide body of evidence shows that the American electorate has become more politically polarized in recent years. There are a wide variety of explanations for this trend, including selective exposure to ideological news sources. This trend corresponds with the increased use of social media for political discussion. There are competing theories regarding whether the spread social media exacerbates or attenuates polarization in the evaluation of political and social groups. The purpose of this chapter is to evaluate these competing claims. This topic is explored using multivariate regression analysis and individual level data from the 2012 American National Election Time Series Study. The findings suggest that social media use actually attenuates rather than drives polarization.

Original Publication Date

2-9-2016

DOI of published version

10.4018/978-1-4666-9879-6.ch001

Repository

UNI ScholarWorks, Rod Library, University of Northern Iowa

Language

en

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