The Internet - Political Turn-On or Turn-off?

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The Internet - Political Turn-On or Turn-off?. John Curtice Strathclyde University/ National Centre for Social Research. The Project. Modules on British Social Attitudes 2003 and 2005; plus previous info from 2000 - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

Transcript of The Internet - Political Turn-On or Turn-off?

  • The Internet - Political Turn-On or Turn-off?John CurticeStrathclyde University/National Centre for Social Research

  • The ProjectModules on British Social Attitudes 2003 and 2005; plus previous info from 2000Examine relationship between internet use and (1) political engagement, (2) social capitalMain N=3297 (2003); 3167 (2005)2005 module fielded after general election

  • The StructureHas access to the internet helped to increase the political engagement of individual voters?What role did the internet play in the dissemination of information in the 2005 election?

  • A turned on votertrusts politicians & governmentparticipates in politics

  • Why might internet turn people on?Greater transparency and availability of informationLower cost - do it from homeLower cost - easier to organiseEasier to find fellow adherents

  • The ProblemIf at one point in time internet users are more trusting and/or activeis that because they use the internetor, because they were more trusting and/or active in the first place?

  • Trust by Length of Use

  • System Efficacy by Use

  • Personal Efficacy by Use

  • MPs lose touch

  • Politics too complicated

  • Interest in Politics

  • Interest in Politics

  • Political Participation

  • Gone on demo

  • Contacted MP

  • Conclusion(Already) politically active were early internet adopters and use it as one way of pursuing their interestBut internet does not (substantially) increase how many people are politically engaged

  • But does this miss the point?Argument assumes that internet only has a direct impact website -> userPossibility of two-step -> user -> othersFragmentation means two-step flows now only way any medium has an impact?

  • Acquiring information

  • The Usual Suspects?

  • Election Talk

  • Who Talks Most?

  • Do Digital Users Talk?

  • ConclusionStill the case that few people use the internet to find out about politicsThose that do are mostly the usual suspectsNevertheless digital users are particularly talkative - and so add a little more to the two-step flow of information