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Katia ZHURAVSKAYA (EHESS, Paris School of Economics) – "Reading Twitter in the Newsroom: How Social Media Affects Traditional-Media Reporting of Conflicts"
This seminar is joint with sociology department
Time: 03:00 pm – 4:00 pm
Date: 29th of september 2020
Katia ZHURAVSKAYA (EHESS, Paris School of Economics) – “Reading Twitter in the Newsroom: How Social Media Affects Traditional-Media Reporting of Conflicts”
Abstract: Traditional media is not immune to the influence of social media. Trends in social media in Israel and Palestine have a significant causal impact on journalists’ reporting of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict in the US. We rely on exogenous variation in the number of tweets about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict driven by local Twitter blackouts, caused by lightning strikes and technical failures. These lackouts, while having a strong and significant negative impact on Twitter activity in Israel and Palestine, do not have any effect on all major news wires reporting on the conflict. Using this variation, we show that comparable conflict events get significantly higher TV coverage in the US if they happen to trend on Twitter in Israel and Palestine. Using text analysis of transcripts of US TV programs, we document that the tonality of coverage of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is affected by social media. On average, Twitter makes traditional-media reporting of the conflict more emotional. In particular, the events leading to Palestinian casualties get more emotional coverage when Twitter is not muted by blackouts. In contrast, the US coverage of the events leading to Israeli casualties are emotional irrespective of the trends on Twitter. The results suggest that Twitter helps traditional-media reporters to portray the point of view of the underdog in a conflict.
joint with Sophie Hatte and Etienne Madinier.
Benoît SCHMUTZ (Pôle de Microéconométrie du CREST)
Anthony STRITTMATTER (Pôle de Microéconométrie du CREST)