Studying Digital Traces of State-Affiliated Media in a Time of Global Pandemic and Geopolitical Decoupling

Friday, 16 September 2022, 10:30am (HKT) on Zoom

The project explores Facebook-based state media accounts from various geopolitical players and focuses on three practices—content volume, intermedia agenda setting/following, and coordinated sharing through networks of Facebook pages, groups, and verified public profiles. Findings suggest that Russian and Chinese state media are more active in content production than their global peers, yet with limited reach. Chinese state media stand out as both agenda-setters and followers: They inject distinct agendas into the global news flows while closely following agendas first covered by other global outlets. State media from all types of geopolitical players engage in inauthentic coordinated sharing, but with notable differences in the ideological composition of the mobilized Facebook networks.

DR. WEIAI XU (WAYNE) is an Associate Professor in the Department of Communication of University of Massachusetts Amherst (USA) and also a faculty associate of the University’s Data Analytics and Computational Social Science program. His research examines division, distrust, and dishonesty. on digital platforms. He uses computational methods to track the networked diffusion and mobilization of ideas and people on digital platforms.

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Organised by Research Postgraduate Studies Program, School of Communication