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Does social media use really make people politically polarized? Direct and indirect effects of social media use on political polarization in South Korea

Title
Does social media use really make people politically polarized? Direct and indirect effects of social media use on political polarization in South Korea
Author
이창준
Keywords
Political polarization; Social media; Political engagement; Media panel; Structural equation model
Issue Date
2018-04
Publisher
ELSEVIER SCIENCE BV
Citation
TELEMATICS AND INFORMATICS, v. 35, No. 1, Page. 245-254
Abstract
To help inform the debate over whether social media is related to political polarization, we investigated the effects of social media use on changes in political view using panel data collected in South Korea (N = 6411) between 2012 and 2016. We found that, although there were no direct effects of social media use, social media indirectly contributed to polarization through increased political engagement. Those who actively used social network sites were more likely to engage in political processes, which led them to develop more extreme political attitudes over time than those who did not use social network sites. In particular, we observed a clear trend toward a more liberal direction among both politically neutral users and moderately liberal users. In this study, we highlight the role of social media in activating political participation, which eventually pushes the users toward the ideological poles. The implications of these findings are discussed.
URI
https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0736585317305208http://repository.hanyang.ac.kr/handle/20.500.11754/121390
ISSN
0736-5853
DOI
10.1016/j.tele.2017.11.005
Appears in Collections:
COLLEGE OF COMMUNICATION[E](언론정보대학) > ETC
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