Geför­dert durch:

Internationale Summer School:
Social Media as a Digital Agora for Political Arguments, Opinions, and Ideas

Vom 15. bis 19. Juli 2019 fand die ers­te inter­na­tio­na­le Sum­mer School des For­schungs­ver­bun­des NRW Digi­ta­le Gesell­schaft mit dem The­ma „Social Media as a Digi­tal Ago­ra for Poli­ti­cal Argu­ments, Opi­ni­ons, and Ide­as“ in der Wolfs­burg in Düs­sel­dorf statt. Aus­ge­rich­tet und orga­ni­siert wur­de die fünf­tä­gi­ge Sum­mer School gemein­sam mit Prof. Dr. Nico­le Krä­mer (Uni­ver­si­tät Duisburg/Essen, PI in Tan­dem 6), ) und Dr. Ger­man Neu­baum (Uni­ver­si­tät Duisburg/Essen, Lei­tung der Nach­wuchs­grup­pe Digi­tal Citi­zenship in Net­work Technologies).

Ankündigungstext der Summer School:

In anci­ent Greece, a cen­tral part of social life took place at the ago­ra. At this phy­si­cal venue, citi­zens did not only tra­de all kinds of com­mo­di­ties, but also deli­be­ra­te about important socie­tal issu­es and poli­tics. The­re­fo­re, the ago­ra can be con­si­de­red as the birth­place of demo­cra­cy. Today, social media seem to bring this anci­ent Greek idea into a digi­tal world: Ser­vices such as You­Tube, Face­book, and Insta­gram enab­le citi­zens not only to publish poli­ti­cal thoughts or initia­ti­ves in the form of vide­os, pic­tures, or sta­tus ent­ries but also to have civi­cal­ly rele­vant inter­ac­tions with other citi­zens at lar­ge sca­le. While this might be seen as a poten­ti­al­ly enri­ching tool for demo­cra­tic socie­ties, nowa­days, it also has to be dis­cus­sed in the light of less desi­ra­ble obser­va­tions such as unci­vi­li­zed exch­an­ges (“hate speech”), the spread of mis­in­for­ma­ti­on (“fake news”), the pre­sence of mani­pu­la­ti­ve enti­ties (“social bots”), or com­mu­ni­ca­ti­on in ideo­lo­gi­cal­ly homo­ge­ne­ous sphe­res (“fil­ter bub­bles” or “echo chambers”).

Empi­ri­cal evi­dence in the field of com­pu­ter-media­ted poli­ti­cal com­mu­ni­ca­ti­on has grown in the last deca­des. Still, it remains a pres­sing need for rese­ar­chers to sys­te­ma­ti­cal­ly iden­ti­fy the cir­cum­s­tan­ces under which poli­ti­cal­ly rele­vant com­mu­ni­ca­ti­on over net­work tech­no­lo­gies can beco­me bene­fi­cial ver­sus detri­men­tal for indi­vi­du­als and socie­ties. What are the bounda­ry con­di­ti­ons under which social media ser­ve as mar­ket­pla­ces whe­r­ein citi­zens can con­tri­bu­te to deli­be­ra­ti­on and ratio­nal exch­an­ges of argu­ments? Which fac­tors influ­ence whe­ther this can lead to bet­ter infor­med (poli­ti­cal) decisi­ons? Which kind of citi­zens bene­fit most or least when using social media in poli­ti­cal con­texts? What are long-term con­se­quen­ces of poli­ti­cal dis­cour­ses via social net­wor­king plat­forms? How can com­pu­ta­tio­nal methods be used to under­stand the mecha­nisms wit­hin the­se plat­forms bet­ter and to impro­ve the con­di­ti­ons for the user? What are ethi­cal impli­ca­ti­ons of poli­ti­cal deli­be­ra­ti­on online and how can we come to a well-groun­ded nor­ma­ti­ve stance? Ans­we­ring the­se ques­ti­ons clear­ly deman­ds a mul­ti-disci­pli­na­ry approach com­bi­ning com­mu­ni­ca­ti­on stu­dies, psy­cho­lo­gy, com­pu­ter sci­ence, social media ana­ly­tics, ethics, and poli­ti­cal sci­ence. This Sum­mer School, hos­ted by the For­schungs­ver­bund NRW Digi­ta­le Gesell­schaft and orga­ni­zed by the Uni­ver­si­ty of Duis­burg-Essen and Uni­ver­si­ty of Bonn, intends to bring the­se disci­pli­nes tog­e­ther and to offer a fruit­ful set­ting for seni­or and juni­or scho­l­ars to joint­ly work on cur­rent ques­ti­ons of poli­ti­cal com­mu­ni­ca­ti­on in com­pu­ter-media­ted contexts.

Short Program:
  • Lec­tu­re 1: Patri­cia Ros­si­ni: Bey­ond Deli­be­ra­ti­ve Norms in Online Poli­ti­cal Talk: The Role of Inci­vi­li­ty and Intolerance
  • Lec­tu­re 2: Chris­toph Bie­ber: The End of the Poli­ti­cal Public as We Know it? Modes of Cam­pai­gning during the Mid­term Elec­tions 2018
  • Lec­tu­re 3: Gina Chen: If Inci­vi­li­ty Means Ever­ything – It Starts to Mean Nothing
  • Lec­tu­re 4: Tobi­as Roth­mund: Tem­po­ral and Inter­per­so­nal Dyna­mics in the For­ma­ti­on of Opi­ni­on-Based Poli­ti­cal Face­book Groups – The case of the Ger­man “Refu­gee Crisis“
  • Lec­tu­re 5: Shira Dvir-Gvirs­man: Poli­ti­cal polarization—Yes? No? Maybe?
  • Lec­tu­re 6: Home­ro Gil de Zúñi­ga: Social Media Simul­ta­ne­ous Hydrau­lic Effects Over Democracy
  • Work­shop 1: Annie Wald­herr: Intro­duc­tion into Agent-Based Mode­ling with NetLogo
  • Work­shop 2: Patri­cia Ros­si­ni: Social Media Rese­arch Methods: An intro­duc­tion using R
  • Work­shop 3: Gina Chen: What is Online Incivility?
  • Work­shop 4: Kars­ten Weber: Ethics in Social Media and in Social Media Studies
  • Work­shop 5: Shira Dvir-Gvirs­man: Social media as an instru­ment of dest­ruc­tion: How social net­work sites affect the demo­cra­tic process
  • Work­shop 6: Tors­ten Zesch and Björn Ross: Hands-on social media ana­ly­tics: Ana­ly­zing dis­cus­sions on Wikipedia
  • Work­shop 7: Tobi­as Roth­mund: Can digi­tal com­mu­ni­ca­ti­on tools be use­ful in sett­ling moral con­flicts in society?
  • Work­shop 8: Home­ro Gil de Zúñi­ga: The influ­ence of digi­tal com­mu­ni­ca­ti­on on socio-poli­ti­cal atti­tu­des and beha­vi­ors: Ana­ly­zing mul­ti-coun­try sur­vey data