Conversation Structure and Quality of Political Discourse: Evidence from Reddit

7 Pages Posted: 20 Apr 2019

Date Written: March 28, 2019

Abstract

The Internet has provided more opportunities for the expression of diverse viewpoints. However, it also contributes to the rise of incivility and polarization. This paper speaks to this debate by showing that the network structure of how conversations happen affect the quality of the discourse. Using the reddit/politics 2014 data to examine this relationship, we find that 1) when the interaction among the users is more extensive, their discourses tend to be more emotionally polarized but more diverse as well and 2) conversations that follow more of power law distribution are also more emotionally polarized.

Suggested Citation

Chen, Kaiping and Sanchez, Lucas Alexander DiSanto, Conversation Structure and Quality of Political Discourse: Evidence from Reddit (March 28, 2019). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3362008 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3362008

Kaiping Chen (Contact Author)

University of Wisconsin-Madison ( email )

1545 Observatory Drive
Hiram Smith Hall 316
Madison, WI Wisconsin 53706
United States

HOME PAGE: http://www.kaipingchen.com

Lucas Alexander DiSanto Sanchez

Amazon.com ( email )

Seattle, WA 98144
United States

Here is the Coronavirus
related research on SSRN

Paper statistics

Downloads
45
Abstract Views
276
PlumX Metrics