Social Media Elites: Mapping informal political influence online
This project studies social media elites — groups of individuals who informally command and dominate political discussions online. In a large-scale empirical study, the structure and modes of operation of such groups are mapped and analysed. Research questions address how social media elites are formed, how they function, how stable they are, and to what degree they overlap with known offline elites.
This project analyses the boundaries and social dynamics of social media elites. Data is be sampled from Swedish language content on Twitter, blogging platforms, and the public parts of Facebook. Analysing a unique dataset covering a number of trending topics of political relevance from 2008-2016, the project asks the overarching question of how informal political influence on social media is formed.