Trending this moment: Examining social media platforms as information gatekeepers through Facebook’s Trending topics and Twitter’s Moments

Duguay, Stefanie (2016) Trending this moment: Examining social media platforms as information gatekeepers through Facebook’s Trending topics and Twitter’s Moments. In 66th Annual Conference of the International Communication Association: Communicating with Power, 9-13 June 2016, Fukuoka, Japan. (Unpublished)

Abstract

For more than a decade, social media platforms have provided networked infrastructures for the flow of news and information. These infrastructures, however, are not neutral in that platforms shape information flows in alignment with their politics (Gillespie, 2010) – business models, competitive strategies, and governing values – which are subsequently realised through their technological architecture. Drawing on emerging frameworks in platform and software studies, I examine two case studies: Facebook’s Trending section and Twitter’s Moments tab, to recognise how platforms influence information flows relating to breaking news and popular headlines. Using José van Djick and Thomas Poell’s (2013) principles of social media logic, I identify how these platforms act as gatekeepers through a combination of authoritative curation and algorithmic personalisation. The resulting social media news landscape steers users toward information exchange within a single platform, bolstering company profits, and favours particular news stories while excluding perspectives represented elsewhere across the web.

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ID Code: 95959
Item Type: Conference Paper
Refereed: No
Additional URLs:
Keywords: social media, gatekeeping, platform studies, news, trending
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > STUDIES IN CREATIVE ARTS AND WRITING (190000) > JOURNALISM AND PROFESSIONAL WRITING (190300) > Journalism Studies (190301)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > LANGUAGES COMMUNICATION AND CULTURE (200000) > COMMUNICATION AND MEDIA STUDIES (200100)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > LANGUAGES COMMUNICATION AND CULTURE (200000) > COMMUNICATION AND MEDIA STUDIES (200100) > Communication Technology and Digital Media Studies (200102)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > LANGUAGES COMMUNICATION AND CULTURE (200000) > COMMUNICATION AND MEDIA STUDIES (200100) > Media Studies (200104)
Divisions: Current > Research Centres > Digital Media Research Centre
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Creative Industries Faculty
Past > Schools > School of Media, Entertainment & Creative Arts
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2016 [please consult the author]
Deposited On: 05 Jun 2016 22:30
Last Modified: 06 Jun 2016 02:46

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