Extreme speech: Online media cultures as a context for right-wing politics
Sahana Udupa (Ludwig Maximilian University)
Paper short abstract:
Examining key features of global digital media, this presentation argues that online media culture should be seen as a context for right-wing extreme speech, and not merely as a channel for the discourse produced outside of it.
Paper long abstract:
Online extreme speech aimed at vulnerable communities is a crucial element in the recent rise of right-wing politics across the world, as it both reflects and provides the means for exclusionist nationalism and populist sentiments to become acceptable, normal and enjoyable. While resentment against global migration and neoliberal consensus is recognized as a key driver for right-wing populism in the global North, beneficiaries of globalization and economic growth are some of the key actors of online nationalism in countries like India, and in China, bottom up nationalism has a complex relation with state control but with growing reliance on online resources. It then raises the question on the mediation of global digital cultures beyond the diverse political-economic factors, and the need for critiquing new media as a sociotechnological dynamic inflected by the market that provides the resources, formats, and cultures of use to normalize online vitriol. Examining anonymity, gamification, fun, data mining, and generation of continuous mass feedback as new media features central to online vitriol, the presentation argues that online media culture should be seen as a context in itself, and not merely as a channel for the discourse produced outside of it.
The digital turn: new directions in media anthropology [Media Anthropology Network]