Social Media and Political Accountability, Andrea Ceron

Reference work entry

Verbal fights between supporters of rival parties often make us consider the Web as an environment that promotes negativity. Nor are politicians themselves exempt from ‘gaffes’ when they act impulsively, revealing their real feelings.

Indeed, social media can encourage such impulsive behaviour but it also represents an opportunity to foster transparency. As politicians start using social media to express their thoughts, they can be held accountable by their principals (that is to say, subjects from whom power is derived, such as voters, party activists, party leaders and interest groups), whether such preferences are sincere or expressed for purely strategic purposes. As a result, accountability and transparency can increase accordingly.

The purpose of my book, Social Media and Political Accountability, is to analyze a number of key episodes concerning the relationship between politics and social media in Italy. This is done by means of automated text analysis (whereby word...

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