News Consumption of Russian Vkontakte Users: Polarization and News Avoidance

Urman, Aleksandra (2019). News Consumption of Russian Vkontakte Users: Polarization and News Avoidance. International journal of communication, 13, pp. 5158-5182. USC Annenberg

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This study explores the patterns of news consumption of Russian users of Vkontakte, the most popular social media platform in Russia, based on a sample of 55,344 users. The analysis is conducted via a combination of network analysis techniques. It demonstrates that the majority of Vkontakte users do not subscribe to news sources, demonstrating that there is a politically apathetic majority and news-interested minority. And news subscribers are polarized along political lines. There is a distinct group of users who subscribe to pro-opposition-leaning politicized sources more than other users do. This study builds on research on polarization, selective exposure, and the role of social media in authoritarian regimes. It provides new empirical evidence on the way that selective exposure and polarization manifest themselves on a non-Western platform in an authoritarian state.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)

Division/Institute:

03 Faculty of Business, Economics and Social Sciences > Social Sciences > Institute of Mass Communication Studies

UniBE Contributor:

Urman, Aleksandra

Subjects:

000 Computer science, knowledge & systems > 070 News media, journalism & publishing
300 Social sciences, sociology & anthropology
300 Social sciences, sociology & anthropology > 320 Political science

ISSN:

1932-8036

Publisher:

USC Annenberg

Language:

English

Submitter:

Aleksandra Urman

Date Deposited:

07 May 2020 13:40

Last Modified:

07 May 2020 13:40

BORIS DOI:

10.7892/boris.142408

URI:

https://boris.unibe.ch/id/eprint/142408

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