On the Influence of Social Bots in Online Protests
Social bots can affect online communication among humans. We study this phenomenon by focusing on #YaMeCanse, the most active protest hashtag in the history of Twitter in Mexico. Accounts using the hashtag are classified using the BotOrNot bot detection tool. Our preliminary analysis suggests that bots played a critical role in disrupting online communication about the protest movement.
KeywordsSocial bots Twitter Protests
We thank IPAM at UCLA and the organizers of the Cultural Analytics program, where this work was first conceived, for a wonderful working environment and for bringing diverse fields together. PSS is thankful to the Primrose Foundation for coding help. We thank Alberto Escorcia for collecting the tweet data and giving us access to it, and also Twitter for allowing access to data through their APIs.
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