Document Type

Article

Publication Date

2017

Publication Title

Twelfth International AAAI Conference on Web and Social Media

Abstract

Wikipedia plays a crucial role for online information seeking and its editors have a remarkable capacity to rapidly revise its content in response to current events. How did the production and consumption of political information on Wikipedia mirror the dynamics of the 2016 U.S. Presidential campaign? Drawing on systems justification theory and methods for measuring the enthusiasm gap among voters, this paper quantitatively analyzes the candidates’ biographical and related articles and their editors. Information production and consumption patterns match major events over the course of the campaign, but Trump-related articles show consistently higher levels of engagement than Clinton-related articles. Analysis of the editors’ participation and backgrounds show analogous shifts in the composition and durability of the collaborations around each candidate. The implications for using Wikipedia to monitor political engagement are discussed.

Comments

This is a post-print version of a paper published in the Twelfth International AAAI Conference on Web and Social Media.

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