Social media interactions, online radicalisation and Conversation Analysis

Social media platforms have become extremely popular in the last fifteen years. Almost half of the world population has a social media account. This has made social media extremely attractive to extremist groups. Recent studies have shown that extremists use social media platforms for violent radicalisation. They take advantage of the interactional nature of these platforms to recruit and influence individuals at risk of radicalisation. Through social media interactions, individuals at risk of radicalisation develop a sense of shared identity which appears to be an important driver in the process of violent radicalisation. Although many studies have highlighted the importance of social media interactions in online radicalisation, it seems that none of these studies has analysed these interactions from an interactional perspective. This paper aims to fill this gap in violent radicalisation research. It proposes to use Conversation Analysis (CA) for the examination of interactions occurring between extremists and potential recruits on social media platforms. More importantly, this article will show the benefits of using CA for the analysis of these interactions.

Tags: Radicalisation, Social Media