The role of legacy media and social media in increasing public engagement about violence against women in Turkey

Bas, Özen and Ogan, Christine L. and Varol, Onur (2022) The role of legacy media and social media in increasing public engagement about violence against women in Turkey. Social Media and Society, 8 (4). ISSN 2056-3051

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Evidence that women have paid the price of what has been labeled the “shadow pandemic” is found in the increase in violence against them. The rates of femicide and lack of trust in the Turkish judicial system of the authoritarian government are worrisome. Protests have been made in the streets and through social media in response. Our goal was to determine the role of legacy news media and social media in bringing awareness of the femicide issue to the public and how affective publics function surrounding a relatively unaddressed societal problem using datasets created by women’s organizations. We conducted a content analysis on 150 sampled femicide cases in Turkey before and during the pandemic taken from online news sources. We investigated the quality of traditional news media coverage and the volume of social media users expressing emotional reactions to individual femicides over time. Results suggest that the journalistic performance of covering the issue of femicide fails to detail essential facts, and awareness and concern for the issue are evident in the Likes, retweets, shares, and expressions of emotional engagement provided to the victims, while online reactions to femicide have increased substantially since 2019, contributing to the formation of affective publics. The study makes a conceptual contribution to the understanding of legacy media and social media’s roles in spurring public engagement about serious social problems in autocratic political contexts while advancing the methodological tools of combining social scientific techniques with computational ones.
Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: affective publics; content analysis; data analysis; femicides; issue awareness; public engagement; social media; Turkey
Divisions: Faculty of Engineering and Natural Sciences
Depositing User: Onur Varol
Date Deposited: 07 Apr 2023 15:53
Last Modified: 07 Apr 2023 15:53

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