Self-Segregation or Deliberation? Blog Readership, Participation, and Polarization in American Politics

  title={Self-Segregation or Deliberation? Blog Readership, Participation, and Polarization in American Politics},
  author={Eric D. Lawrence and John M. Sides and Henry Farrell},
  journal={Perspectives on Politics},
There is active debate among political scientists and political theorists over the relationship between participation and deliberation among citizens with different political viewpoints. Internet based blogs provide an important testing ground for these scholars' theories, especially as political activity on the Internet becomes increasingly important. In this article, we use the first major dataset describing blog readership to examine the relationship between deliberation, polarization and… 

Figures from this paper

The Two Blogospheres: Political Blog Use, Participation, and Sophistication during the 2008 U.S. Election Season
Despite the attention given to political blogs in recent campaigns, scholars have often overlooked something without which they could not thrive: readers. Moreover, literature has considered that A Tale of Political Blogs and Content
  • K. Nahon, Jeff J. Hemsley
  • Political Science, Computer Science
    2011 44th Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences
  • 2011
Using a hybrid theoretical framework which acknowledges homophily and the power law distribution among political blogs, this paper exhibits the use of the Internet also as a cross-participation platform and as strengthening participation.
Learning to Do Democracy: Deliberative Capacity in Political Blogging Communities
This thesis demonstrates that participants in Political Blogging Communities increase their deliberative capacity over time, potentially enabling them to participate in democratic societies. The
A-List Filipino Political Bloggers and Their Blog Readers
abstract This paper looks at political blogging in a developing, democratic country, like the Philippines. It presents the results of an exploratory-descriptive study of the profile, perception, and
Blogging in the Shadow of Parties: Exploring Ideological Differences in Online Campaigning
Blogging is an increasingly important practice in election campaigns, showing interesting variations across contexts. Recent research has shown that the adoption and use of blogs is strongly shaped
The Polarizing Effect of Incivility in the Political Blog Commentsphere
As more and more Americans replace traditional news sources with new media news sources, there is reasonable concern regarding the effects. One common concern is the potential for increased political
Bloggers and Readers Blogging Together: Collaborative Co-creation of Political Blogs
It is argued that blogging is not only a social activity, but is a collaborative process of co-creation in which both bloggers and readers engage.
The Causes and Consequences of Political Blogging
“Blogging” has become an incredibly popular activity in recent years. Although political blogging broadly defined as a blog whose “content focuses on issues, events, and policy in a constituency,
Motives for Active Participation in Political Blogs
Blogs play an important role in political communication and in forming the opinions of political actors and politically interested users. Their ability to facilitate active interaction, present
Jointly They Edit: Examining the Impact of Community Identification on Political Interaction in Wikipedia
The results indicate that users who proclaim their political affiliation within the community tend to proclaim their identity as a ‘Wikipedian’ even more loudly, suggesting that the shared identity of ‘being Wikipedian' may be strong enough to triumph over other potentially divisive facets of personal identity, such as political affiliation.


Cross-ideological discussions among conservative and liberal bloggers
Abstract With the increasing spread of information technologies and their potential to filter content, some have argued that people will abandon the reading of dissenting political opinions in favor
The Myth of Digital Democracy
Is the Internet democratizing American politics? Do political Web sites and blogs mobilize inactive citizens and make the public sphere more inclusive? The Myth of Digital Democracy reveals that,
Political Blogs: Transmission Belts, Soapboxes, Mobilizers, or Conversation Starters?
ABSTRACT This paper makes an initial attempt to situate political blogging alongside other forms of political participation by asking the question: how do political bloggers actually use their blogs?
A Tale of Two Blogospheres
In this article, the authors compare the practices of discursive production among top U.S. political blogs on the left and right during summer 2008. An examination of the top 155 political blogs
The political blogosphere and the 2004 U.S. election: divided they blog
Differences in the behavior of liberal and conservative blogs are found, with conservative blogs linking to each other more frequently and in a denser pattern.
Introduction: Blogs, politics and power: a special issue of Public Choice
Abstract There is good reason to believe that blogs are changing politics, but we don’t know exactly how. Nor do we know whether the normative consequences of blogs for politics are likely to be good
The power and politics of blogs
Abstract The rise of bloggers raises the vexing question of why blogs have any influence at all, given their relatively low readership and lack of central organization. We argue that to answer this
Political Communication in Media Society: Does Democracy Still Enjoy an Epistemic Dimension? The Impact of Normative Theory on Empirical Research
I first compare the deliberative to the liberal and the republican models of democracy, and consider possible references to empirical research and then examine what empirical evidence there is for
What Americans Know about Politics and Why It Matters
This book is the most comprehensive analysis ever written about the American public's factual knowledge of politics. Drawing on extensive survey data, including much that is original, two experts in
New competencies in democratic communication? Blogs, agenda setting and political participation
Abstract Contrary to initial predictions Internet-mediated forms of communication have not become mediums of mass communication. Traditional media still reach far more people than even the most