Political Advertising on the Wikipedia Market Place of Information
Göbel, Sascha, and Simon Munzert. 2017. Political Advertising on the Wikipedia Marketplace of Information. Social Science Computer Review
24 Pages Posted: 25 Jan 2016 Last revised: 15 Sep 2017
Date Written: April 4, 2016
We point to a popular yet under-researched platform of political information, the online encyclopedia Wikipedia. Considering the supply side of the marketplace, we argue that personal biographies on the platform are an attractive medium for politicians to enhance their appearance. We trace changes to biographies coming from the parliament by using data that cover the entire edit histories for biographies on all German MPs for the three last legislative periods. Our findings show editing of personal biographies to be a persistent phenomenon. Moreover, type, timing, and driving factors of editing behavior highlight the importance politicians’ attribute to Wikipedia for pursuing reelection. Our results speak to the domains of political professionalization, voting behavior and the general measurement of communicative patterns.
Keywords: Wikipedia, online advertising, digital campaigning, political communication, vote seeking
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