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Social media analysis and public opinion: the 2010 UK General Election

Anstead, Nick ORCID: 0000-0002-1090-5271 and O'Loughlin, Ben (2015) Social media analysis and public opinion: the 2010 UK General Election. Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication, 20 (2). pp. 204-220. ISSN 1083-6101

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Identification Number: 10.1111/jcc4.12102


Social media monitoring in politics can be understood by situating it in theories of public opinion. The multimethod study we present here indicates how social media monitoring allow for analysis of social dynamics through which opinions form and shift. Analysis of media coverage from the 2010 UK General Election demonstrates that social media are now being equated with public opinion by political journalists. We use interviews with pollsters, social media researchers and journalists to examine the perceived link between social media and public opinion. In light of competing understandings these interviews reveal, we argue for a broadening of the definition of public opinion to include its social dimension.

Item Type: Article
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2015 International Communication Association
Divisions: Media and Communications
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
J Political Science > JN Political institutions (Europe) > JN101 Great Britain
Date Deposited: 28 Jan 2015 09:55
Last Modified: 05 Jun 2024 03:15
Funders: The London School of Economics and Political Science

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