Challenges of E-Participation: Can the Opinions of Netizens Represent and Affect Mass Opinions?
This paper aims to understand the representativeness of online public opinion and the influence of online public-issue discussions on mass opinion. By analyzing three survey datasets from Taiwan, the findings show that online civic participants are not representative of the general population; moreover, online discussions of public issues do not directly affect general public opinion. According to these findings, this paper recommends that online public opinions are used with caution as they are not necessarily representative of general public opinion.
KeywordsSentiment analysis Public opinion poll E-participation Representativeness
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