Academic Articles

//Academic Articles

When the Algorithm Itself is a Racist: Diagnosing Ethical Harm in the Basic Components of Software

Computer algorithms organize and select information across a wide range of applications and industries, from search results to social media. Abuses of power by Internet platforms have led to calls for algorithm transparency and regulation. Algorithms have a particularly problematic history of processing information about ...

2016-10-15T04:21:35+00:00October 15th, 2016|Academic Articles, Journal Special Issues|

Bots and Political Influence: A Sociotechnical Investigation of Social Network Capital

This study explains how bots interact with human users and influence conversational networks on Twitter. We analyze a high-stakes political environment, the UK general election of May 2015, asking human volunteers to tweet from purpose-made Twitter accounts—half of which had bots attached—during three events: the ...

2016-10-15T04:19:58+00:00October 15th, 2016|Academic Articles, Journal Special Issues|

Where Do Bots Come From? An Analysis of Bot Codes Shared on GitHub

An increasing amount of open source code is available on the Internet for quickly setting up and deploying bots on Twitter. This development of open-source Twitter bots signals the emergence of new political economies that redistribute agencies around technological actors, empowering both the writers of ...

2016-10-15T04:11:50+00:00October 15th, 2016|Academic Articles, Journal Special Issues|

IJOC: Talking to Bots: Symbiotic Agency and the Case of Tay

In 2016, Microsoft launched Tay, an experimental artificial intelligence chat bot. Learning from interactions with Twitter users, Tay was shut down after one day because of its obscene and inflammatory tweets. This article uses the case of Tay to re-examine theories of agency. How did ...

2016-10-15T04:00:55+00:00October 15th, 2016|Academic Articles, Journal Special Issues|

IJOC: Keeping Ottawa Honest—One Tweet at a Time? Politicians, Journalists, Wikipedians and Their Twitter Bots

WikiEdits bots are a class of Twitter bot that announce edits made by Wikipedia users editing under government IP addresses, with the goal of making government editing activities more transparent. This article examines the characteristics and impact of transparency bots, bots that make visible the ...

2016-10-14T05:22:50+00:00October 14th, 2016|Academic Articles, Journal Special Issues|

IJOC: Political Communication, Computational Propaganda, and Autonomous Agents — Introduction

The Internet certainly disrupted our understanding of what communication can be, who does it, how, and to what effect. What constitutes the Internet has always been an evolving suite of technologies and a dynamic set of social norms, rules, and patterns of use. But the ...

2016-10-14T05:14:56+00:00October 14th, 2016|Academic Articles, Journal Special Issues|

Automating Power: Social Bot Interference in Global Politics

Over the last several years political actors worldwide have begun harnessing the digital power of social bots — software programs designed to mimic human social media users on platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Reddit. Increasingly, politicians, militaries, and government-contracted firms use these automated actors in ...

2016-04-01T15:00:21+00:00April 1st, 2016|Academic Articles|