Noorte poliitiline osalus Twitteris: kuidas noored ennast säutsudes väljendavad?

Paula Joanna Sillat


Youth political participation on Twitter: how youth express themselves in tweets?


Social media allows young people to engage in new, alternative ways that differ from traditional political participation. Social media is considered to be one of the main means of self-expression for young people, which includes political self-expression. Young people prefer more personal ways of political participation compared to traditional participation, such as voting in elections or joining a political party. To increase youth political participation, it is important to understand how young people participate on different social media platforms. In addition, it is essential to find methods to include those who have not yet been involved by previous methods of involvement. This study focused on Twitter, intending to find out what supports and hinders participation on Twitter, what forms of participation young people use, what meaning participation on Twitter has for young people, what motivates them to participate, and what are the effects of participation on Twitter on other forms of participation in the opinion of young people. The author used ethnographic observation on the social media platform Twitter and semi-structured interviews with young Estonian Twitter users as data collection methods and thematic content analysis to analyze the collected data. Results revealed that although young people are interested in political and social issues, with interest primarily expressed through keeping themselves informed, they consider their own activity insufficient. According to young people, active political participation in social media manifests primarily in initiating discussions through original posts. Anonymity and positive feedback from other users were cited as factors supporting participation. Young people prefer social media to get news and see Twitter as a reliable source of information, but they emphasized the criticality of sources and the importance of fact-checking content posted on social media. They considered Twitter an important social media platform that supports participation through sharing information, raising awareness of current issues and participating in discussions through which changes in society can take place.

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Ühiskonnateaduste Instituut
Tallinna Ülikool

ISSN: 2228-4133 (võrguväljaanne)