Who Sets the Agenda? Polarization and Issue Ownership in Turkey’s Political Twittersphere

Burak Dogu, Hazım Onur Mat


Research on political agenda setting, in general, is interested in how issues are conveyed to the political agenda, and how governments tend to reflect on those issues. Media are assumed to have an effect on governmental policies; however, the extent to which media agenda influences the political agenda is ambiguous. Ambiguity is further exacerbated in predominant-party systems, where the media are more likely to be directly linked with the state. In this study, we examined whether the news media can still set the political agenda in a highly polarized political environment. In line with this, we applied the network agenda-setting model to Twitter, and compared the issues on the media and political agendas in Turkey. Findings indicate political parallelism as the major factor in defining the relationship between the issues and accounts. The results also show that in all cases the political agenda essentially preceded the media agenda.


media agenda, political agenda, network agenda-setting, network analysis, Twitter, polarization

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