The Routledge Companion to Social Media and Politics: 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

The Routledge Companion to Social Media and Politics

1st Edition

Edited by Axel Bruns, Gunn Enli, Eli Skogerbo, Anders Olof Larsson, Christian Christensen


538 pages

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Social media are now widely used for political protests, campaigns, and communication in developed and developing nations, but available research has not yet paid sufficient attention to experiences beyond the US and UK. This collection tackles this imbalance head-on, compiling cutting-edge research across six continents to provide a comprehensive, global, up-to-date review of recent political uses of social media.

Drawing together empirical analyses of the use of social media by political movements and in national and regional elections and referenda, The Routledge Companion to Social Media and Politics presents studies ranging from Anonymous and the Arab Spring to the Greek Aganaktismenoi, and from South Korean presidential elections to the Scottish independence referendum. The book is framed by a selection of keystone theoretical contributions, evaluating and updating existing frameworks for the social media age.


"Comprehensive and definitive, this is an outstanding book that provides a panoramic view of politics in an era of social media. From the Mediterranean to East Asia to Oceania, from Scandinavia to sub-Sahara Africa to Latin America, the volume as a whole is truly global, yet with nuanced regional and national analyses in each chapter. Theoretically informed, the research presented here breaks new empirical grounds using latest digital methods. The result is a milestone for our collective understanding of new media technology and comparative politics in the twenty-first century." —Jack Linchuan Qiu, The Chinese University of Hong Kong

"This book brings together top scholars from across disciplines and across the globe to examine social media use in a variety of political systems and for distinct purposes. It is required reading for anyone interested in understanding the many ways that digital communication technologies now are used in political life." —Jennifer Stromer-Galley, Syracuse University

"The strength of this collection is in its diversity of international and theoretical perspectives, which make it a valuable resource providing a contemporary overview of this quickly expanding area of political communication research." -Caroline Fisher, Australian Journalism Review

Table of Contents


Axel Bruns, Gunn Enli, Eli Skogerbø, Anders Olof Larsson, and Christian Christensen


  1. Politics in the Age of Hybrid Media: Power, Systems, and Media Logics

    Andrew Chadwick, James Dennis, and Amy P. Smith

  2. Network Media Logic: Some Conceptual Considerations

    Ulrike Klinger and Jakob Svensson

  3. Where There Is Social Media There Is Politics

    Karine Nahon

  4. Is Habermas on Twitter? Social Media and the Public Sphere

    Axel Bruns and Tim Highfield

  5. Third Space, Social Media and Everyday Political Talk

    Todd Graham, Scott Wright, and Dan Jackson

  6. Tipping the Balance of Power: Social Media and the Transformation of Political Journalism

    Marcel Broersma and Todd Graham

  7. Agenda-Setting Revisited: Social Media in Mainstream Journalism

    Eli Skogerbø, Axel Bruns, Andrew Quodling, and Thomas Ingebretsen

  8. "Trust Me, I Am Authentic!": Authenticity Illusions in Social Media Politics

    Gunn Enli

  9. How to Speak the Truth on Social Media: An Inquiry into Post-Dialectical Information Environments

    Mercedes Bunz


  11. All Politics Is Local: Anonymous and the Steubenville/Maryville Rape Cases

    Christian Christensen

  12. Social Media Accounts of the Spanish Indignados

    Camilo Cristancho and Eva Anduiza

  13. Every Crisis Is a Digital Opportunity: The Aganaktismenoi Movement’s Use of Social Media and the Emergence of Networked Solidarity in Greece

    Yannis Theocharis

  14. Social Media Use during Political Crises: The Case of the Gezi Protests in Turkey

    Lemi Baruh and Hayley Watson

  15. Structures of Feeling, Storytelling, and Social Media: The Case of #Egypt

    Zizi Papacharissi and Stacy Blasiola

  16. The Importance of ‘Social’ in Social Media: The Lessons from Iran

    Gholam Khiabany

  17. Digital Knives Are Still Knives: The Affordances of Social Media for a Repressed Opposition against an Entrenched Authoritarian Regime in Azerbaijan

    Katy E. Pearce and Farid Guliyev

  18. Social Media and Social Movements: Weak Publics, the Online Space, Spatial Relations and Collective Action in Singapore

    Natalie Pang and Debbie Goh

  19. Social Media and Civil Society Actions in India

    Rajesh Kumar

  20. Cyberactivism in China: Empowerment, Control, and Beyond

    Rongbin Han

  21. Voicing Discontent in South Korea: Origins and Channels of Online Civic Movements

    Maurice Vergeer and Se Jung Park

  22. Nationalist and Anti-Fascist Movements in Social Media

    Christina Neumayer


  24. From Emerging to Established? A Comparison of Twitter Use during Swedish Election Campaigns in 2010 and 2014

    Anders Olof Larsson and Hallvard Moe

  25. Social Media in the UK Election Campaigns 2008-14: Experimentation, Innovation and Convergence

    Darren G. Lilleker, Nigel Jackson, and Karolina Koc-Michalska

  26. Compulsory Voting, Encouraged Tweeting? Australian Elections and Social Media

    Tim Highfield and Axel Bruns

  27. Not Just a Face(book) in the Crowd: Candidates’ Use of Facebook during the Danish 2011 Parliamentary Election Campaign

    Morten Skovsgaard and Arjen Van Dalen

  28. Social Media Incumbent Advantage: Barack Obama’s and Mitt Romney’s Tweets in the 2012 US Presidential Election Campaign

    Gunn Enli and Anya Naper

  29. The 2012 French Presidential Campaign: First Steps into the Political Twittersphere

    Françoise Papa and Jean-Marc Francony

  30. The Emergence of Social Media Politics in South Korea: The Case of the 2012 Presidential Election

    Lars Willnat and Young Min

  31. Interactions between Different Language Communities on Twitter during the 2012 Presidential Election in Taiwan

    Yu-Chung Cheng and Pai-lin Chen

  32. Social Media Use in the German Election Campaign 2013

    Christian Nuernbergk, Jennifer Wladarsch, Julia Neubarth, and Christoph Neuberger

  33. Comparing Facebook and Twitter during the 2013 General Election in Italy

    Luca Rossi and Mario Orefice

  34. Social Media and Election Campaigns in Sub-Saharan Africa: Insights from Cameroon

    Teke Ngomba  

  35. Social Media and Elections in Kenya

    Martin Nkosi Ndlela

  36. Electoral Politics on Social Media: The Israeli Case

    Sharon Haleva-Amir and Karine Nahon

  37. Social Media and the Scottish Independence Referendum 2014: Events and the Generation of Enthusiasm for Yes

    Mark Shephard and Stephen Quinlan

  38. The Use of Twitter in the Danish EP Elections 2014

    Jakob Linaa Jensen, Jacob Ørmen, and Stine Lomborg

  39. Twitter in Political Campaigns: The Brazilian 2014 Presidential Election

    Raquel Recuero, Gabriela Zago, and Marco T. Bastos

About the Editors

Axel Bruns is an Australian Research Council Future Fellow and Professor in the Digital Media Research Centre at Queensland University of Technology in Brisbane, Australia.

Gunn Enli is Professor of Media Studies and Head of the Research Project "Social Media and Election Campaigns" (SAC) at the Department of Media and Communication, University of Oslo.

Eli Skogerbø is Professor in Media Studies and Co-Head of the Political Communication Research Group at the Department of Media and Communication, University of Oslo.

Anders Olof Larsson is Postdoctoral Fellow at the Department of Media and Communication at the University of Oslo.

Christian Christensen is Professor of Journalism at Stockholm University.

About the Series

Routledge Media and Cultural Studies Companions

Routledge Media and Cultural Studies Companions offer thorough, high-quality surveys and assessments of the major topics in the fields of media and cultural studies. All entries in each companion are specially commissioned and written by leading scholars in the field. Clear, accessible, and cutting-edge, these companions are the ideal resource for advanced undergraduates, postgraduate students, and researchers alike.

You may also wish to visit our Routledge Handbooks Online platform to view Routledge’s full companion and handbook offerings:

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Media Studies