First Monday

First Monday is one of the first openly accessible, peer–reviewed journals solely devoted to resarch about the Internet. First Monday has published 1,864 papers in 278 issues, written by 2,602 different authors, over the past 23 years. No subscription fees no submission fees, no advertisements, no fundraisers, no walls.

This month: July 2019
Internet Research Agency Twitter activity predicted 2016 U.S. election polls
In 2016, the Internet Research Agency (IRA) deployed thousands of Twitter bots that released hundreds of thousands of English language tweets. It has been hypothesized that this affected public opinion during the 2016 U.S. presidential election. This research tested that hypothesis using vector autoregression (VAR) comparing time series of election opinion polling during 2016 versus numbers of re-tweets or ‘likes’ of IRA tweets. It was found that changes in opinion poll numbers for one of the candidates were consistently preceded by corresponding changes in IRA re-tweet volume, at an optimum interval of one week before. In contrast, the opinion poll numbers did not correlate with future re-tweets or ‘likes’ of the IRA tweets. The release of these tweets parallel significant political events of 2016 and that approximately every 25,000 additional IRA re-tweets predicted a one percent increase in election opinion polls for one candidate. As these tweets were part of a larger, multimedia campaign, it is plausible that the IRA was successful in influencing U.S. public opinion in 2016.
  
Also this month
Technically white: Emoji skin-tone modifiers as American technoculture
The inclusion of skin-tone modifiers into the standard emoji set marked a shift from the default white racialization of emoji towards explicit attempts to expand racial representation in the human emoji characters. This study explores the racial logics of emoji as culturally-situated artifacts that rely on linked understandings of race and technology. An interface analysis of emoji skin-tone modifiers, coupled with user discourse analysis, explored the design and user interpretations of skin-tone modifiers. The findings suggest that though the skin-tone modifiers were introduced as an intervention into the lack of racial representation in emoji, they continue to technically center whiteness in the emoji set as an extension of American technoculture.
  
  


 

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