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A Confirmation Bias View on Social Media Induced Polarisation During Covid-19

Sachin Modgil, Rohit Kumar Singh, Shivam Gupta, Denis Dennehy Orcid Logo

Information Systems Frontiers

Swansea University Author: Denis Dennehy Orcid Logo

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Abstract

Social media has played a pivotal role in polarising views on politics, climate change, and more recently, the Covid-19 pandemic. Social media induced polarisation (SMIP) poses serious challenges to society as it could enable ‘digital wildfires’ that can wreak havoc worldwide. While the effects of S...

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Published in: Information Systems Frontiers
ISSN: 1387-3326 1572-9419
Published: Springer Science and Business Media LLC 2021
Online Access: Check full text

URI: https://cronfa.swan.ac.uk/Record/cronfa59523
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Abstract: Social media has played a pivotal role in polarising views on politics, climate change, and more recently, the Covid-19 pandemic. Social media induced polarisation (SMIP) poses serious challenges to society as it could enable ‘digital wildfires’ that can wreak havoc worldwide. While the effects of SMIP have been extensively studied, there is limited understanding of the interplay between two key components of this phenomenon: confirmation bias (reinforcing one’s attitudes and beliefs) and echo chambers (i.e., hear their own voice). This paper addresses this knowledge deficit by exploring how manifestations of confirmation bias contributed to the development of ‘echo chambers’ at the height of the Covid-19 pandemic. Thematic analysis of data collected from 35 participants involved in supply chain information processing forms the basis of a conceptual model of SMIP and four key cross-cutting propositions emerging from the data that have implications for research and practice.
Keywords: Echo Chambers; Social Media Induced Polarisation; Confirmation Bias; Covid-19
College: School of Management