A Polarization Approach for Understanding Online Conflicts in Times of Pandemic: A Brazilian Case Study

Date
2021-01-05
Authors
Kamienski, Carlos
Mazim, Lucas
Penteado, Claudio
Goya, Denise
Di Genova, Daniel
De Franca, Fabricio
Ramos, Diogo
Horita, Flávio
Journal Title
Journal ISSN
Volume Title
Publisher
Volume
Number/Issue
Starting Page
2101
Ending Page
Alternative Title
Abstract
As society becomes digitalized, online social networks tend to be primary places for debate but can turn into a battlefield for imposing conflicting narratives. Automating the identification of online conflicts is a challenge due to difficulties in defining antagonist communities and controversial discussions. Here, we propose a polarization approach for understanding Twitter conflicts in Brazil during the COVID-19 pandemic, where a small group of polarizers influences a larger group of polarizees according to their ideological leaning. Polarizers are automatically identified by centrality metrics in following, retweet, and reply networks, and manually labeled as leftists, rightists, or undefined. We collected and analyzed the polarization of 21 potentially conflicted political events in Brazil. Our results show that polarizers adequately represent the polarization of events, the traditional media is giving way to a new breed of tweeters, and retweet and reply play different roles within a conflict that reflects their polarization level.
Description
Keywords
Digital Society, covid-19, digital society, online conflict, polarization, twitter
Citation
Extent
10 pages
Format
Geographic Location
Time Period
Related To
Proceedings of the 54th Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences
Rights
Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International
Rights Holder
Collections
Email libraryada-l@lists.hawaii.edu if you need this content in ADA-compliant format.