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Twitter feeders: an analysis of dominant 'voices' and patterns in a local government mosque controversy
journal contributionposted on 2016-12-01, 00:00 authored by Lisa Waller, Kristy HessKristy Hess, Kristin DemetriousKristin Demetrious
Intense mainstream news coverage, graphic media spectacle and national political attention dominated public discussion about a local planning proposal to build a $3 million mosque complex in the regional Victorian city of Bendigo in 2014-2016. This article focuses on a study of Twitter and its relationship to the public issue. It employs a ‘geo-social’ framework to examine how the mosque controversy entered wider information flows and engaged political power beyond the local. It provides contextually specific evidence of mainstream media and elite level actors dominating Twitter during deliberations over a local government planning issue. The analysis reveals how Twitter use in this case was shaped around legacy media logics, such as ‘old’ news values and traditional power structures, rather than generating wide participatory public discussion and engagement on the issue.