Examining incel subculture on Reddit
September 18, 2023
The online presence of incels, or involuntary celibates, has been an increasing security concern for researchers, practitioners, and policymakers in recent years, given that self-identified incels – including Alek Minassian and Elliot Rodger – used the Internet to disseminate incel ideology and manifestos prior to committing acts of violence. However, little is empirically known about ...
r/WatchRedditDie and the politics of reddit’s bans and quarantines
September 18, 2023
The subreddit r/WatchRedditDie was founded in 2015 after reddit started implementing anti-harassment policies, and positions itself as a “fire alarm for reddit” meant to voyeuristically watch reddit’s impending (symbolic) death. As conversations around platform governance, moderation, and the role of platforms in controlling hate speech become more complex, r/WatchRedditDie and its affiliated subreddits are dedicated ...
Assessing the Extent and Types of Hate Speech in Fringe Communities: A Case Study of Alt-Right Communities on 8chan, 4chan, and Reddit
September 18, 2023
Recent right-wing extremist terrorists were active in online fringe communities connected to the alt-right movement. Although these are commonly considered as distinctly hateful, racist, and misogynistic, the prevalence of hate speech in these communities has not been comprehensively investigated yet, particularly regarding more implicit and covert forms of hate. This study exploratively investigates the extent, ...
Digital cynical romanticism: Japan’s 2channel and the precursors to online extremist cultures
September 18, 2023
In the West, the concern surrounding the rise of online harassment, trolling and other malicious and antisocial behaviors tend to be hyper focused on websites like 4chan, 8chan and reddit. However, the rise of online hate culture that laid the groundwork for movements like Gamergate and the alt right has a precedent in Japan – ...
From cyberfascism to terrorism: On 4chan/pol/ culture and the transnational production of memetic violence
September 18, 2023
This article examines the fascists imaginaries that are produced and circulated at 4chan /pol/. Based on analysis of memes and posts collected during a 6-month period in 2019, it explores the diagnoses given by anonymous users to the imagining of the ultra-nation and dehumanized others, and the prescriptions for the remedies needed to bring about ...
Variations on a Theme? Comparing 4chan, 8kun, and Other chans’ Far-Right “/pol” Boards
September 18, 2023
Online forums such as 4chan and 8chan have grown in notoriety following a number of high-profile attacks conducted in 2019 by right-wing extremists who used their “/pol” boards (dedicated to “politically incorrect” discussions). Despite growing academic interest in these online spaces, little is still known about them; in particular, their similarities and differences remain to ...
Shades of hatred online: 4chan duplicate circulation surge during hybrid media events
September 18, 2023
The 4chan /pol/ platform is a controversial online space on which a surge in hate speech has been observed. While recent research indicates that events may lead to more hate speech, empirical evidence on the phenomenon remains limited. This study analyzes 4chan /pol/ user activity during the mass shootings in Christchurch and Pittsburgh and compares ...
Upvoting Extremism: Collective Identity Formation and the Extreme Right on Reddit
September 18, 2023
Since the advent of the Internet, right-wing extremists and those who subscribe to extreme right views have exploited online platforms to build a collective identity among the like-minded. Research in this area has largely focused on extremists’ use of websites, forums, and mainstream social media sites, but overlooked in this research has been an exploration ...
Does Platform Migration Compromise Content Moderation? Evidence from r/The_Donald and r/Incels
September 18, 2023
When toxic online communities on mainstream platforms face moderation measures, such as bans, they may migrate to other platforms with laxer policies or set up their own dedicated website. Previous work suggests that, within mainstream platforms, community-level moderation is effective in mitigating the harm caused by the moderated communities. It is, however, unclear whether these ...
Detecting Potential Warning Behaviors of Ideological Radicalization in an Alt-Right Subreddit
September 18, 2023
Over the past few years, new ideological movements like the Alt-Right have captured the attention and concern of both mainstream media, policy makers, and scholars alike. Today, the methods by which right-wing extremists are radicalized are increasingly taking place within social media platforms and online communities. However, no research has yet investigated methods for proactively ...