Traditionally, news media served as an interface between citizens and politics, eventually influencing the political behaviour together with the context and social networks embededness. In the information age, both politics and communication are transformed. The popularity of online social platforms has increased the number of actors affected to spread political, commercial and other messages to a massive number of potential recipients.
We organized the PCNet satellite with the aim to provide a forum where qualitative and quantitative methods in political communication studies can interact and mutually cross-fertilize. Network science served as a common ground, both theoretical and methodological, for a transdisciplinary dialogue between these complementary traditions, while online social media and the interactions taking place on them result in the transversal object of study and experimental setting.
We had three keynote speakers spanning a range of different topics, and eight contributed talks by authors from different research fields and countries.
Joana Gonçalves de Sa opened the session sharing theoretically and data based thoughts on why people share fake news, the big elephant in the room in political communication nowdays.
Walter Quattrociocchi proposed a data based journey that from confirmation bias lead to echo-chumber: this sort of social bubble where it seems we all live. However, if this is a new phenomenology originated in our hiperconnected society or not is the core of the enlightening discussion at the end of is talk.
Finally, Paolo Gerbaudo, took the communication style of the veri mediatic italian politic Matteo Salvini as an example of how right-wing populists engage publics on online social media.
The video of all the invited and contributed presentation can be found also in the dedicated YouTube channel. Enjoy!