The “informed citizen” is an idea and ideal brought forth by philosophers such as Rosseau, who advocated for the informed citizen as the fundamental basis of modern democracy. In an age where we can witness a fundamental shift of information sources, e.g. from traditional newspaper to Facebook, the question of being informed has arguably reached new relevance. Further, in relation to the recent US election, can the outcome be explained through the notion of people being un- or misinformed? If being informed is such a pivotal element of democratic society, does it matter where we find the information? How do we practice the distribution and production of information, and how do we decide what kind of information is important to foster an informed citizenry? These are some of the questions our panel including Henrik Dahl (Liberal Alliance), Rolf Bjerre (Alternativet), Ingrid Ank (Grundtvigsk Forum) and Gitte Stald (ITU) will discuss. The conference is free and we are looking forward to welcome you.
Hvordan brugte danskerne internettet i relation til folketingsvalget 2015? Hvilken form for politisk information opsøgte de, hvilken betydning havde internettet og hvor meget brugte danskerne de sociale medier?
For tredje folketingsvalg i træk har en kreds af forskere fra Københavns Universitet, Aarhus Universitet, Danmarks Medie- og Journalisthøjskole og IT-Universitetet i samarbejde med Danske Medier undersøgt brugen af internettet i valgkampen med et særligt fokus på sociale medier.
Resultatet er blevet en rapport, som præsenteres og diskuteres på dette seminar. Her vil projektets forskere fremlægge deres resultater og indbyde til diskussion, om blandet andet svaret på ovenstående spørgsmål.
Arrangementet er åbent for alle. Det vil være særligt interessant for partier, interesseorganisationer, medier, forskere og studerende, men alle er velkomne
Den nævnte rapport trykkes i et begrænset oplag. Deltagere på seminaret vil få udleveret rapporten efter første til mølle princippet.
Deltagelse er gratis, men tilmelding kræves. Send mail med dit navn og stilling/arbejdsplads til firstname.lastname@example.org med TILMELDING 25. AUGUST i titellinjen.
HVOR: AUDITORIUM 4, IT-UNIVERSITETET
14.00 Velkomst ved forskergruppen
14.10 Internettet og politisk deltagelse 2007-15
Jakob Linaa Jensen, Forskningschef, Danmarks Medie- og Journalisthøjskole
14.35 Internettet, brugerne og den politiske dagsorden
Jens Hoff, Professor i statskundskab, Københavns Universitet
15.00 Sociale medier i valgkampene 2007-2015
Lisbeth Klastrup, Lektor, IT-Universitetet i København
15.25 Diskussion og opsamling
15.45 Reception og udlevering af rapport
Se video optagelse (video.itu.dk).
Hvad? Seminar for akademikere og praktikere med udgangspunkt i spritnye data om de sociale mediers rolle under valget 2015
Hvor? Auditorium 1, IT Universitetet, København
Hvornår? Den 27. maj, kl. 13.00-16.00
Hvor meget? Gratis, men tilmelding er nødvendig via Eventbrite
Kom med til et seminar om sociale mediers rolle i valget 2015, når forskningsinitiativet DECIDIS på ITU præsenterer nye fund baseret på deres studier før, under og efter folketingsvalget i 2015. I forbindelse med valget udførte ITUs forskere bl.a. interviews med alle partiernes social media managers, samt indsamlede store mængder af data fra de sociale medier Facebook, Twitter og Instagram. Arrangementet vil være åbent for alle og deltagelsen er gratis, men tilmelding er påkrævet af pladshensyn. Målgruppen for dette arrangement er alle med interesse i medier og politisk kommunikation, både folk med praktisk erfaring og forskere og studerende.
På seminaret vil forskerne præsentere og diskutere, hvordan partier og politikere i Danmark i øjeblikket anvender og forstår sociale medier og deres rolle i den overordnede kampagnestrategi. Vi vil fremlægge generelle tendenser på tværs af partier, og diskutere de forskellige opfattelser og tilgange til platformene med udgangspunkt i vores analyser. Formålet med dagen er bl.a. at bygge bro mellem forskning og praksis. Vi afslutter derfor med en debat om både udfordringer og muligheder ved brugen af sociale medier, både for politikere og partier og for det demokratiske samfund bredt set.
På dagen vil tre forskere fra DECIDIS præsentere deres analyser baseret på interviews samt indsamling af data fra de tre sociale medieplatforme: Facebook, Twitter og Instagram. I sidste del af seminaret vil der være en diskussion med panelet inklusivt mulighed for spørgsmål fra publikum. Diskussionen ledes af ordstyrerne Benjamin Rud Elberth og Astrid Haug, der blandt andet er kendt fra TV2 NEWS programmet Digital Dagsorden.
Efter arrangementet vil der være forfriskninger i atrium med mulighed for networking. PDF
Friday, 13 May 2016
13:00-15:00, IT University of Copenhagen
These public lectures bring together scholars who apply a critical perspective to social media, which has become integral to contemporary activism and civic agency. Far from being neutral platforms on which people can freely and openly interact in
order to create civic agency, social media have their own inherent materiality, shaping how we engage, protest, resist, and struggle. This materiality may entail the wires and silicon of technology, the codes and algorithms of digital platforms, and the commerciality of social media. The public lectures seek to address the mediation and mediatization of protest at the intersection of civic agency and algorithmic control to address questions such as: What are the
challenges and potentials of social media for civic agency and activism within a contested space of media corporations and logics? How do commercial social media platforms shape contemporary forms of protest? And what are the implications for grassroots action?
Everybody is welcome, no registration needed!
Detailed information in the PDF.
Danmark er et unikt land, for studier af det demokratiske potentiale for offentlig politisk debat og engagement, fordi danskerne er stærkt repræsenterede, ikke mindst på Facebook. Tidligere studier har fokuseret på sociale mediers demokratisk potentiale eller har kritiseret sociale mediers mulige negative indflydelse på kvaliteten af den offentlige debat. Resultaterne fra dette survey understøtter ikke tydeligt nogle af disse to yderpunkter. I stedet præsenteres en række ligheder med, hvad vi ved fra tidligere undersøgelser af social interaktion offline1: generelt set er danskerne ikke særligt åbne for at diskutere politik i offentlige sammenhænge. Dette bør ikke fortolkes som at sociale medier ikke lever op til et demokratisk potentiale; i stedet bør vi forstå sociale medier som en forlængelse af offline interaktion. Sociale medier har ændret måden, vi kommunikerer og interagerer på. Digitalisering af disse interaktioner giver os et bredere publikum, end vi tidligere har haft adgang til, og muliggør kommunikation, som er mere uafhængig af tid og rum. Men i takt med at sociale medier optages som en del af hverdagspraksis, er det også naturligt at brugsmønstre tilpasses hverdagsbehov og -interesser.
- Sociale medier er hverdagspraksis for mange danskere, men aktivitetsniveau og typen af aktiviteter
- Danskere bruger primært sociale medier til at læse indhold fra andre. De bruges i mindre grad til at producere originalt indhold eller til at interagere med indhold, som er produceret af andre.
- Unge danskere i Danmark er stærkere repræsenteret og mere aktive på sociale medier end andre aldersgrupper. Generationen mellem 20 og 39 år er mere interesseret end andre grupper i at bruge Facebook til at diskutere politik med fremmede som ikke er familie, venner eller kollegaer.
- Særligt på Facebook er der en overvægt af brugere, som definerer deres kommunikation som privat og som bruger platformen til at kommunikere med private kontakter såsom venner og familie.
- Generelt set er det ikke så ofte, at danskerne diskuterer politik med fremmede på sociale medier, og at dette fører til, at de ændrer syn på et politisk emne. Men der er en mindre gruppe, som siger de gør dette.
How do Danes engage with and through social media in public political debates? Are Danes becoming participatory content creators or is this a mere ideal of social media use? A preliminary analysis of the data collected in the DECIDIS survey “Social Media and Political Engagement” shows that social media and especially Facebook continues to be a central part of most Danes daily media habits. That is to say, social media does seem to engage some people in political debate, however, most of the Danes prefer using social media platforms to stay in contact with friends and family, and to receive news. In sum, the survey suggests the following three statements about social media use in Denmark:
- Social media is widely used in Denmark, however the average age as well as the frequency and type of use differ greatly.
- Danes use social media primarily to read (“stay in touch” or “be informed”) rather than produce original content or participate in political debates.
- Overall, young Danes are much more present on social media platforms. Espeically, the generation between 20 and 39 years is using social media for political debate.
A more detailed look at the user numbers shows that Facebook is the most popular social media platform in Denmark: 72,4% older than 15 have a Facebook account and 58% use Facebook at least once a day. The data further shows that Facebook has penetrated all age groups. Almost all young Danes use Facebook (91,2% in the age group 16-19) and still more than half of the over 70 year olds (61,5%) use Facebook. Generally, Facebook is a popular platform for news consumption and staying in contact with friends and family. A slightly different picture can be seen when looking at Instagram and Snapchat. Young Danes use these two services significantly more than older Danes. While 82,4% of the 16 to 19 year olds use Snapchat, less than 1% of the 70 year olds use the instant messenger. In contrast Twitter is generally much less popular. Fewer people have an account and, of those who do, very few people use it daily. In this sense Twitter is a more public platform and therefore mostly used for public relations.
Within the survey three different types of social media use were distinguished: reading, producing and participating. From a democratic perspective, participating (= interacting with the available content) is the most desirable from of engagement. However, according to the findings of the survey Danes use social media mostly to read and watch content. This can be illustrated with the iceberg metaphor: The bottom is formed by readers, the middle by producers creating content and the top the participants actively engaging in discussions.
With regards to political discussions, most people say they never discuss politics with people they do not know online. Few people say they do so often but a larger portion say they may do so though seldom. Unsurprisingly, most people say they never change their mind on a political issue after a discussion online. Some say they do this occasionally and only few say often or always. These finding suggest that social media is not simply generating echo chambers supporting conformation bias, but these platforms can also lead to new ideas and changed opinions of users. Especially younger Danes use Facebook to discuss politics online. 22,6% of the 20 to 29 year old Facebook users engage frequently in political debate.
In conclusion, it can be said that Danes produce content online, however not solely as content producers but as producers of data. Every click online leaves traces and this may be an increasing form of digital content production.
Contact DECIDIS survey: Luca Rossi, email@example.com
Foto credit: Morten Hjelholt
What? Presentation of survey “Social Media and Politicial Engagement” in Denmark
When? March 9th, 14.00-16.00
Where? IT University Copenhagen, Room 3A54
How do Danish citizens participate politically with and through social media? This is one of the main questions explored in the DECIDIS study “Social Media and Political Engagement”. Starting point of the study is to measure political engagement in social media, especially along the practices of “reading”, “producing” and “participating”. A preliminary analysis of the collected data shows that social media use has matured. This means social media has become an integral part of everyday life, for example about 74% of Danish Facebook users older than 16 years use Facebook daily. This, however, also means that expectations towards political participation online may have to be adjusted – not all users are as engaged as generally assumed or wished for. Especially young Danes seek private spaces online and they find those in services such as Instagram and Snapchat; even though technically speaking Facebook offers a greater variety of privacy settings. The study further shows that social media is widely used to receive and read news; 47% of the 16-18 year old Facebook users say that they use Facebook daily in this matter. About 37% of the 19-29 year old Facebook users and 33% of the 20-39 year old Facebook users do so as well.
DECIDIS researchers Gitte Stald, Luca Rossi and Lisbeth Klastrup will present and discuss the study next Wednesday, March 9th (14.00-16.00, IT University Copenhagen, AUD 4) in greater detail. Everybody interested in the Danish social media sphere is invited, no registration needed. We are looking forward to discuss the findings of the study with you!
Wednesday, March 9th
14.00 – 16.00, IT University Copenhagen
Next Wednesday DECIDIS researchers Gitte Stald and Luca Rossi will present first findings of the annual DECIDIS survey researching the Danish social media sphere. The representative survey provides insight into Danish media habits and preferences. The goal of the study is to contribute towards the on-going discussion how social media influences democractic practices. Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
Everybody is welcome, no registration needed!
In December 2015, Gitte Bang Stald and Mette Grønbæk Rasmussen, conducted a pilot study on digital citizenship within socially marginalized groups. The aim of the study was to explore how we can study marginalization and vulnerability in relation to digital society. We interviewed three persons with experiences of homelessness and two inmates in a closed prison facility. Exploring the consequences of the “digital divide”, the study went further into how marginalization and restricted access to ICT affects the experience of citizenship in the digital age. Therefore, the interviews focussed on everyday life and the challenges when using digital media. Not surprisingly, the interviews show that life is very different for all informants, which is reflected their media use and their experiences of citizenship and exclusion.
The pilot study showed that the recent 20 years of development in ICT has neither reached the streets nor reached the inside of the closed prisons. For people with no permanent residence, personal communication and information are restricted by the lack of power supply (“if only smartphones used AA batteries”), which means, that the most practical means of communication is non-smart mobile-phones (long-lasting battery) and FM radio (entertaining AND uses AA batteries). For people living under long-term incarceration, communication is shaped by institutionalization and the problem of security. Contact with people and institutions outside the wall is therefore limited to face-to face visits, snail mail and land-line phonecalls (from one of the phonebooth in a common area). Online PC access is possible for short periods of time in the educational facilities, however only through the secured PC network that has been developed exclusively for the Danish prison system. Within Danish prisons all access to websites that have communication outlets are disabled. The informants describe the network as almost useless, except for getting headline news and official government information websites.
People living under incarceration or with out a home occupies highly marginalized in Danish society. The interviewees articulated themselves as being positioned ”outside – looking in”. For them, participation in the digital society seemed like something they are excluded from. However, informants are still aware of activity, possibilities and importance of the digital society and they conduct their role in this in very different ways. Some are actively resisting digital participation and some are fighting to be included. For example, an inmate had been fighting for 5 years, to get access to “parent-intra” (a parent-teacher communication system in Danish schools), without sucess.
Further research in this area will be twofold. One part will look at how digital society plays into the experience of exclusion and the other part will look at how the secured PC network can play a more enabling role in sustaining digital literacy, inclusion and citizenship for the inmates in closed prisons.
How will election campaigns evolve in relation to increasing social media use? This was the main question tackled by digital media researcher Axel Bruns, and DECIDIS researchers Luca Rossi, Lisbeth Klastrup and Sander Schwartz during the seminar “Election 2020” tacking place at the IT University of Copenhagen.
Axel Bruns, known for his extensive research on Twitter, started off by talking about the policital landscape in Australia. The case of political campaigning in Australia provides an interesting context as it raises the questions whether the law enforcing compulsory voting at federal and state level encourages awareness of political issues and political actors or not. In this regard it can be stated that the main focus needs to be put on the swinging middle, which makes up 10-20% of Australian voters. Drawing on comprehensive research in relation to the hashtags #ausvotes, #qldvotes and #wavotes Bruns concluded that Twitter has evolved from a narrow “Twitterati” in-group tool to a mainstream campaign tool. The collected data further suggests that there is no relation between how often a politician is mentioned on Twitter and the final election outcome. Additionally, the dynamics of recent elections, which have largely favoured the conservative side, mean that the Australian conservative Coalition bloc, which has won a number of landslide elections, has yet to engage in the question how to use social media effectively. By contrast, social media are especially important for small Australian parties, which are active on social media but are systematically disadvantaged by the first-past-the-post system used in Australian elections.
The following presentation by Lisbeth Klastrup shed light on the Danish context. Danish politicians are active in the Facebook sphere since 2007 and have fully adopted the medium in 2011 when Facebook became a mainstream tool for politicial communication. By contrast, Twitter has only been used by early adopters in 2011 and is now slowly becoming a mainstream tool. Klastrup further talked about “defining moments” where the social sphere made an actual impact. In 2007, for example, invited Anders Fogh Rasmussen his Facebook “friends” for a run and therewith engaged with his online community offline. Another recent example is the refugee crises, where the hashtag #engangvarjegflygtning (rough translation: Once I was a refugee) has been used in relation to a social media campaign. In conclusion, Klastrup states that social media is no longer optional but needs to be strategically integrated in a meaningful way.
Sander Schwartz’ talk on “Facebook and the general Danish election” supplemented Klastrup’s talk and presented data gathered from 2011 to 2015. Schwartz started off by noting that Danish Facebook use is not declining, even through this is an often made claim. According to a recent study by Danish Radio, 62% of the Danish population use Facebook on a daily basis. This trend is confirmed when looking at how Danish politicians use social media: While in 2011 only 38 % of the candidates were active on Facebook pages, in 2015 62 % of the politicians used Facebook pages. Also, the use of Twitter accounts has risen considerably, from 15 % to 69 %. Overall, Schwartz noted a steep increase of citizen activity on Facebook. He believes that recent changes in the Facebook design have potentially led to this engagement.
Luca Rossi concluded the seminar by sharing insights from an annual data collection run by the DECIDIS research group, which will be published in the first quarter of 2016. The data shows that Facebook has fully penetrated the age group of 16 to 18 year olds Danes. This does not mean that all young Danes use Facebook intensively but that they have at least opened an account at some point. When contrasting Twitter and Facebook it can be stated that Facebook is still at the forefront, Twitter is mostly used by young Danes up to the age of 30. A network analysis of different political hashtags used on Twitter shows that activity mostly happen around TV debates. Further, it can be stated that users typically re-tweet what they agree with, which leverages the problem of online echo chambers, in which competing ideas are typically underrepresented. In conclusion and as a summary of the seminar, it can be stated that Twitter is and will be an important medium gathering ad-hoc publics for live events as well as a (back)channel for politicians, journalists and so-called “political junkies”.