Populist online communication: Interactions among politicians, journalists, and citizens (Dissertation summary)
Keywords:populism, online communication, online news, social media, user reactions
The recent rise of populist politicians in Western democracies is often associated with their allegedly successful use of digital media. However, for a long time, there has been little research specifically on populist online communication. To address this substantial research gap, the thesis pursues two major research aims: First, it investigates drivers of populist communication in politicians’ online self-presentation and online news media representation. Second, the thesis examines the effects of populist online communication on citizens’ behavior in the form of user reactions to politicians’ social media posts and reader comments on online news articles. Based on five internationally comparative studies and the overarching synopsis, the cumulative thesis demonstrates that populist online communication is driven by the reciprocal interactions among politicians, journalists, and citizens and is influenced by various factors on the macro, meso, and micro level. Furthermore, it shows that populist online communication resonates with citizens and is multiplied by them – specifically by citizens with prior strong populist attitudes. By analyzing the interactions of three key actor groups – politicians, journalists, and citizens – and by following a multimethod approach the dissertation connects research on both the supply and demand side of populism.
How to Cite
Copyright (c) 2021 Sina Blassnig
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.
The electronic contributions in the Internet are distributed under the "Creative Commons Attribution – NonCommercial – NoDerivatives 4.0 International" - License (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0). This license allows others to share the work in any medium or format with an acknowledgement of the work's authorship and initial publication in Studies in Communication Sciences SComS. However, the work may not be altered or transformed and it may not be used for commercial purposes. These conditions are irrevocable. The full text of the license may be read under http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/deed.en