Post-Election: Political Retweet Network #NRW17


Explore the interactive retweet network of parties, politicians and journalists during the Austrian national election campaign 2017.

During the Austrian national election campaign, we presented a first version of the retweet network of Austrian politicians and parties. This time we extended the networks to a longer period of analysis and to also include journalists (see below).

In our previous blog-post, we argued that retweets are interesting to investigate because they tend to be used as endorsements (although not always). Furthermore, a network-analytical investigation of the Austrian political retweet network may thus tell you a lot about intra- and inter-party relations. Find the original report and interactive network here.

In this follow-up analysis, we updated the period of analysis to range from May 12, the day the snap elections were called, to October 17, 5pm, the minute the polls closed on election day.

You will find an updated version of the previous network - now containing a few more links and nodes - here.

While we got a lot of positive feedback on our previous analysis, we were asked to add Austrian journalists to the interactive network. In order to do so, we used the following list of Austrian journalists compiled by @derSchett. Any journalist who retweeted a politician or party's account or got retweeted by one of the political accounts at least once during our period of analysis was thus added to the new interactive network.

Find the interactive network with politicians, parties and journalists here.

Have fun while exploring the network! However, please note that: 1. Journalists are connectors between parties - this is why most journalists can be found in the centre of the network and the network structure and its clusters are thus less clear compared to the network without journalists. 2. Links between journalists and politicians will most of the time depend more strongly on politicians retweeting journalists rather than journalists retweeting politicians. Also, it could be the case that journalists use retweets differently than politicians. They may retweet the original messages with a quite different spin, adding more interpretation or even contrasting perspectives to the original messages. Our analysis does not account for this, and as such, we therefore urge our readers not to over-interpret the particular pattern between journalists and politicians in this retweet network, let alone infer political bias of a journalist's product from it.

That said, we hope that you enjoy exploring the networks and are looking forward to your feedback!

These interactive networks have been brought to you by the Austrian National Election Study (AUTNES) as well as the Computational Communication Science Lab.



Political retweet network #nrw17 excluding journalists
Political retweet network #nrw17 including journalists