Skip to content

“An Overview of the Swiss Political Telegram User Communities and their Role in the Distribution of Toxic Speech”

Researchers Involved

Dr. Aleksandra Urman

Stefan Katz

research areas

Hate speech
International
Media use
Mis-/Disinformation
News
Politics
Research Methods
Social Media
Sociology
Switzerland
Technology

timeframe

2021 - 2022

An Overview of the Swiss Political Telegram User Communities and their Role in the Distribution of Toxic Speech

Swiss political user communities on Telegram and toxic speech.

With the project, we intend to provide an overview of the Swiss political Telegramsphere with a specific emphasis on toxic user communities. We will identify key actors on Swiss Telegram in general, key toxic actors and major targets of toxic speech on Swiss Telegram, connections between Swiss and foreign toxic actors on Telegram as well as the spillover effects between toxic and non-toxic channels and groups. To achieve that, we will use a combination of computational methods such as network analysis and automated text analysis, statistical analysis and manual text coding.

Background

Background

In 2020, Telegram gained increasing visibility in the context of the Swiss political sphere, however, the platform has not been researched in the Swiss context yet.

Research Questions

Research Questions

  • Who are the key political actors within the Swiss Telegramsphere?
  • How prevalent is hate speech and toxic speech within the Swiss political Telegramsphere and who are the main promoters and targets of such speech?
  • How are the Swiss political actors on Telegram engaging in toxic speech connected to those abroad and to actors who generally don’t engage in toxic speech?
Project Aim

Project Aim

The aim of the project is to provide systematic analysis of the Swiss political Telegramsphere with a particular emphasis on the groups and actors that are likely to engage in hate speech and misinformation distribution such as far-right politicians, coronavirus skeptics and conspiracy theorists.