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The Role of Social Media during Social Movements – Observations from the #metoo Debate on Twitter

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Title:The Role of Social Media during Social Movements – Observations from the #metoo Debate on Twitter
Authors:Brünker, Felix
Wischnewski, Magdalena
Mirbabaie, Milad
Meinert, Judith
Keywords:Collective Intelligence and Crowds
information communication technology
social media
social movements
user behavior
Date Issued:07 Jan 2020
Abstract:In recent years, the development of information communication technologies (ICT) such as social media changed the way people communicate and engage in social movements. While conventional movements were fought in the streets, social media enabled movements to take place online. In this paper, we aim to investigate the role of social media during social movements which evolve online. Specifically, we examined Twitter communication during the #metoo debate. To this end, we applied methods from social network analysis to identify influential users participating during the debate. Conducting a manual content analysis, we classified 200 power users into roles. Likewise, a manual classification of 1,271 tweets found distinct communication categories. The results overall point to different motives: First, the communication was deeply concerned with the issue of sexual harassment, calling for attention and action. Second, we found reason to believe that self-serving and branding intentions drove participation.
Pages/Duration:10 pages
Rights:Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International
Appears in Collections: Collective Intelligence and Crowds

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