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Selective online exposure and
political polarization during
Swedish election campaigns
a longitudinal analysis using four ...
Selective online exposure
Background
• Internet is a high-choice media environment
• Personal motivations increasingly imp...
Media Use
Belief/attitude/
behavior
Media Use
Belief/attitude/
behavior
Media Use
Belief/attitude/
behavior
Reinforcing sp...
Media Use
Belief/attitude/
behavior
Media Use
Belief/attitude/
behavior
Media Use
Belief/attitude/
behavior
Reinforcing sp...
Media Use
Belief/attitude/
behavior
Media Use
Belief/attitude/
behavior
Media Use
Belief/attitude/
behavior
Reinforcing sp...
Hypotheses
More selective exposure  more ideologically extreme
Less selective exposure  less ideologically extreme
Resea...
Method
• Panel survey during five months in the 2014 EU and Swedish
national election: ”super election year”
• Random samp...
Sample (n=2,281)
Sex:
Education:
Age: 19–76 years (M=46, SD=17)
Left-leaning Moderates Right-leaning
Results: political ideology
Left-leaning Moderates Right-leaning
Results: political ideology
Left-leaning Moderates Right-leaning
Results: political ideology
Results: political ideology
Attitude-inconsistent
news exposure
Attitude-consistent
news exposure
Results: selective exposure
Attitude-inconsistent
news exposure
Attitude-consistent
news exposure
Results: selective exposure
Attitude-inconsistent
news exposure
Attitude-consistent
news exposure
Results: selective exposure
Cross-lagged panel model
Political
Ideologyw1
Political
Ideologyw2
Selective
Exposurew2
Political
Ideologyw3
Political
Ide...
Cross-lagged panel model
Political
Ideologyw1
Political
Ideologyw2
Selective
Exposurew2
Political
Ideologyw3
Political
Ide...
Cross-lagged panel model
Political
Ideologyw1
Political
Ideologyw2
Selective
Exposurew2
Political
Ideologyw3
Political
Ide...
Cross-lagged panel model
Political
Ideologyw1
Political
Ideologyw2
Selective
Exposurew2
Political
Ideologyw3
Political
Ide...
Cross-lagged panel model
Political
Ideologyw1
Political
Ideologyw2
Selective
Exposurew2
Political
Ideologyw3
Political
Ide...
Conclusions
No support for political ideology and selective exposure
mutually reinforcing and becoming more extreme over t...
Peter M. Dahlgren
selective exposure and media effects
@peterdalle
peterdahlgren.com
peter.dahlgren@jmg.gu.se
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Selective online exposure and political polarization during Swedish election campaigns

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A longitudinal analysis using four waves of panel data.

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Selective online exposure and political polarization during Swedish election campaigns

  1. 1. Selective online exposure and political polarization during Swedish election campaigns a longitudinal analysis using four waves of panel data Peter M. Dahlgren Adam Shehata Jesper Strömbäck @peterdalle peterdahlgren.com peter.dahlgren@jmg.gu.se
  2. 2. Selective online exposure Background • Internet is a high-choice media environment • Personal motivations increasingly important in news selection • Prefer attitude-consistent news, but don’t avoid attitude-inconsistent • Political ideologies more salient during elections Purpose Examine how political ideology and selective exposure mutually reinforce over time, and whether they become more extreme
  3. 3. Media Use Belief/attitude/ behavior Media Use Belief/attitude/ behavior Media Use Belief/attitude/ behavior Reinforcing spirals model Slater (2007, p. 284) Time 1 Time 2 Time 3
  4. 4. Media Use Belief/attitude/ behavior Media Use Belief/attitude/ behavior Media Use Belief/attitude/ behavior Reinforcing spirals model Slater (2007, p. 284) Time 1 Time 2 Time 3
  5. 5. Media Use Belief/attitude/ behavior Media Use Belief/attitude/ behavior Media Use Belief/attitude/ behavior Reinforcing spirals model Slater (2007, p. 284) Time 1 Time 2 Time 3
  6. 6. Hypotheses More selective exposure  more ideologically extreme Less selective exposure  less ideologically extreme Research questions Selective exposure over time? Role of political interest? RQ1 RQ2 H1 H2
  7. 7. Method • Panel survey during five months in the 2014 EU and Swedish national election: ”super election year” • Random sample • 2,281 (33%) completed all waves Wave 1 Wave 2 Wave 3 Wave 4 May 22–25 September 14May 26–June 4April 11–22 August 1–13 September 15–24
  8. 8. Sample (n=2,281) Sex: Education: Age: 19–76 years (M=46, SD=17)
  9. 9. Left-leaning Moderates Right-leaning Results: political ideology
  10. 10. Left-leaning Moderates Right-leaning Results: political ideology
  11. 11. Left-leaning Moderates Right-leaning Results: political ideology
  12. 12. Results: political ideology
  13. 13. Attitude-inconsistent news exposure Attitude-consistent news exposure Results: selective exposure
  14. 14. Attitude-inconsistent news exposure Attitude-consistent news exposure Results: selective exposure
  15. 15. Attitude-inconsistent news exposure Attitude-consistent news exposure Results: selective exposure
  16. 16. Cross-lagged panel model Political Ideologyw1 Political Ideologyw2 Selective Exposurew2 Political Ideologyw3 Political Ideologyw4 Selective Exposurew4 Political interest Income .7 .31 1*** .91*** 1*** .96*** .03* .23*** .09*** –.05*** .08*** –.07*** .03** Selective Exposurew1 Selective Exposurew3 Sex .05** .04** Education Standardized path coefficients. χ2(6, N=3,557) = 3.67 p = .721 RMSEA < .001 CFI = 1.0 R2 = .107 *p<.05 **p<.01 ***p<.001 Results: mutual reinforcement
  17. 17. Cross-lagged panel model Political Ideologyw1 Political Ideologyw2 Selective Exposurew2 Political Ideologyw3 Political Ideologyw4 Selective Exposurew4 Political interest Income .7 .31 1*** .91*** 1*** .96*** .03* .23*** .09*** –.05*** .08*** –.07*** .03** Selective Exposurew1 Selective Exposurew3 Sex .05** .04** Education Standardized path coefficients. χ2(6, N=3,557) = 3.67 p = .721 RMSEA < .001 CFI = 1.0 R2 = .107 *p<.05 **p<.01 ***p<.001 Results: mutual reinforcement
  18. 18. Cross-lagged panel model Political Ideologyw1 Political Ideologyw2 Selective Exposurew2 Political Ideologyw3 Political Ideologyw4 Selective Exposurew4 Political interest Income .7 .31 1*** .91*** 1*** .96*** χ2(6, N=3,557) = 3.67 p = .721 RMSEA < .001 CFI = 1.0 R2 = .107 *p<.05 **p<.01 ***p<.001 .03* .23*** .09*** –.05*** .08*** –.07*** .03** Selective Exposurew1 Selective Exposurew3 Sex .05** .04** Education Standardized path coefficients. Results: mutual reinforcement
  19. 19. Cross-lagged panel model Political Ideologyw1 Political Ideologyw2 Selective Exposurew2 Political Ideologyw3 Political Ideologyw4 Selective Exposurew4 Political interest Income .7 .31 1*** .91*** 1*** .96*** .03* .23*** .09*** –.05*** .08*** –.07*** .03** Selective Exposurew1 Selective Exposurew3 Sex .05** .04** Education Standardized path coefficients. χ2(6, N=3,557) = 3.67 p = .721 RMSEA < .001 CFI = 1.0 R2 = .107 *p<.05 **p<.01 ***p<.001 Results: mutual reinforcement
  20. 20. Cross-lagged panel model Political Ideologyw1 Political Ideologyw2 Selective Exposurew2 Political Ideologyw3 Political Ideologyw4 Selective Exposurew4 Political interest Income .7 .31 1*** .91*** 1*** .96*** .03* .23*** .09*** –.05*** .08*** –.07*** .03** Selective Exposurew1 Selective Exposurew3 Sex .05** .04** Education Standardized path coefficients. χ2(6, N=3,557) = 3.67 p = .721 RMSEA < .001 CFI = 1.0 R2 = .107 *p<.05 **p<.01 ***p<.001 Results: mutual reinforcement
  21. 21. Conclusions No support for political ideology and selective exposure mutually reinforcing and becoming more extreme over time. Individuals exposed to attitude-inconsistent news get slightly less extreme (but mostly moving toward right). High political interest: more extreme political ideology, and more exposure to attitude-inconsistent news. RQ1 RQ2 H1 H2
  22. 22. Peter M. Dahlgren selective exposure and media effects @peterdalle peterdahlgren.com peter.dahlgren@jmg.gu.se

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