Nithyanand in CSSI seminar Fri. Dec. 8 12:30-2

The UMass Computational Social Science Institute invites you to an engaging (and timely) talk from a visiting postdoc, collaborating with two CSSI affiliates:

Rishab Nithyanand
Ford-Mozilla Open Web Fellow, Data & Society, New York
Friday, December 8, 2017 • 12:30 p.m.-2:00 p.m. (lunch served at 12:15)
Computer Science Building, Room 150/151
Collaboration with CSSI Affiliates Brian Schaffner (Political Science) and Philippa Gill (Computer Science)

Title: Online Political Discourse in the Trump Era

Abstract: We identify general trends in the (in)civility and complexity of political discussions occurring on Reddit between January 2007 and May 2017 – a period spanning both terms of Barack Obama’s presidency and the first 100 days of Donald Trump’s presidency. We then investigate four factors that are frequently hypothesized as having contributed to the declining quality of American political discourse – (1) the rising popularity of Donald Trump, (2) increasing polarization and negative partisanship, (3) the democratization of news media and the rise of fake news, and (4) merging of fringe groups into mainstream political discussions.

Bio: Rishab is currently a Ford-Mozilla Open Web Fellow at Data & Society in New York. His research interests are in the areas of security, privacy, and Internet measurement. More specifically, he likes research geared towards defending anonymity, understanding Internet censorship, measuring aspects of the advertising and tracking ecosystem, and generally understanding the impact of the Internet on the sociopolitical realities of today.

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