Mechachal: Online Debates and Elections in Ethiopia. Report One: A Preliminary Assessment of Online Debates in Ethiopia

39 Pages Posted: 5 Jun 2016

See all articles by Iginio Gagliardone

Iginio Gagliardone

University of Oxford; University of the Witwatersrand

Matti Pohjonen

University of Oxford

Abdissa Zerai

Addis Ababa University

Zenebe Beyene

Addis Ababa University

Gerawork Aynekulu

University of Belgrade, Students

Tewodros Gebrewolde

University of Leicester

Michael Seifu

Independent

Nicole Stremlau

University of Oxford

Jonathan Bright

University of Oxford - Oxford Internet Institute

Mesfin Bekalu

Harvard University - T.H. Chan School of Public Health

Mulatu Moges

University of Oslo, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Media and Communication, Students; Addis Ababa University - School of Journalism and Communication

Date Written: October 2, 2015

Abstract

This working paper is the first of a series of three and examines how Ethiopians in Ethiopia and the diaspora are using social media to talk about politics, religion, and ethnicity. After illustrating the methodological choices that have been made to understand engagement and antagonism in the Ethiopian online sphere, the report suggests how and to which extent, despite the limited penetration and polarization that has characterized the media in Ethiopia, social media seems to have offered new opportunities for experimentation across divides.

Keywords: Hate speech, social media, Internet, Africa, Ethiopia, political contestation, extremism, innovation in research methods

Suggested Citation

Gagliardone, Iginio and Pohjonen, Matti and Zerai, Abdissa and Beyene, Zenebe and Aynekulu, Gerawork and Gebrewolde, Tewodros and Seifu, Michael and Stremlau, Nicole and Bright, Jonathan and Bekalu, Mesfin and Moges, Mulatu, Mechachal: Online Debates and Elections in Ethiopia. Report One: A Preliminary Assessment of Online Debates in Ethiopia (October 2, 2015). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2782070 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2782070

Iginio Gagliardone (Contact Author)

University of Oxford ( email )

Mansfield Road
Oxford, Oxfordshire OX1 4AU
United Kingdom

University of the Witwatersrand ( email )

1 Jan Smuts Avenue
Johannesburg, Gauteng 2000
South Africa

Matti Pohjonen

University of Oxford ( email )

Mansfield Road
Oxford, Oxfordshire OX1 4AU
United Kingdom

Abdissa Zerai

Addis Ababa University ( email )

King George VI St
Addis Ababa, 1000
Ethiopia

Zenebe Beyene

Addis Ababa University ( email )

King George VI St
Addis Ababa, 1000
Ethiopia

Gerawork Aynekulu

University of Belgrade, Students ( email )

Studentski trg 1
Belgrade
Serbia

Tewodros Gebrewolde

University of Leicester ( email )

University Road
Leicester, LE1 7RH
United Kingdom

Michael Seifu

Independent ( email )

No Address Available

Nicole Stremlau

University of Oxford ( email )

Mansfield Road
Oxford, Oxfordshire OX1 4AU
United Kingdom

Jonathan Bright

University of Oxford - Oxford Internet Institute ( email )

1 St. Giles
University of Oxford
Oxford OX1 3PG Oxfordshire, Oxfordshire OX1 3JS
United Kingdom

Mesfin Bekalu

Harvard University - T.H. Chan School of Public Health ( email )

677 Huntington Avenue
Boston, MA MA 02115
United States

Mulatu Moges

University of Oslo, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Media and Communication, Students ( email )

Postboks 1093
Blindern 0317
Oslo
Norway

Addis Ababa University - School of Journalism and Communication ( email )

Addis Ababa
Addis Ababa, 1179

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