Online Engagement and Moral Outrage (09.16.21)

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Plain Bible Teaching Podcast

This week we’re going to be talking about moral outrage on social media. Everyone who uses social media – and many who don’t – recognize that many users express hatred and animosity toward others on social media. But why? Especially when some of these people would not talk this way to others in person. We’re going to discuss that in our episode today.

New Research: More Engagement Promotes More Outrage Online

“Earlier this month, researchers William Brady, Killian McLoughlin, Tuan Doan, and Molly Crockett published a study in Science Advances called, “How social learning amplifies moral outrage expression in online social networks.

“The study is the first of its kind. It provides real, statistical data to support the general belief that moral outrage posted to social media yields high engagement, which means it leads to more moral outrage being posted to social media.

“This is logical, isn’t it? It makes sense that if moral outrage posted to social media yields a high number of engagements—likes, shares, retweets, comments, etc.—it would encourage users to post more content that expresses moral outrage. I think this is logical because, for untold numbers of social media users, the goal of posting content online is to harvest as much attention as possible, and engagement on posted content is the surest evidence of earned attention that we have on social media.” (Terms of Service)

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