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ThinkMind // International Journal On Advances in Internet Technology, volume 11, numbers 1 and 2, 2018 // View article inttech_v11_n12_2018_7


Voices from Venezuela: Examining Blogs to Study the Socio-Politico-Economic Crisis and Consequent Emigration

Authors:
Esther Ledelle Mead
Muhammad Nihal Hussain
Mohammad Nooman
Samer Al-khateeb
Nitin Agarwal

Keywords: blogosphere; situation awareness; socio-political; social media data analysis; migration; Venezuela; Blogtrackers.

Abstract:
The objective of this research is to continue our journey into determining whether the blogosphere, as a type of social media platform, can be used to disseminate information regarding the socio-political views and concerns of citizens within a specific community. We expand upon our example case of focusing on information relative to the Venezuelan community regarding the current Venezuelan socio-economic crisis. Are Venezuelan blogs being used to discuss socio- political events and the quality of life concerns that are associated with the economic crisis in that community? Are Venezuelans using blogs to discuss possible migration away from the region as a result of these concerns? The Blogtrackers tool was used to analyze almost 30,000 Venezuelan blog posts collected between August 2003 and March 2017. Our analysis showed that the blogosphere is indeed being used as a platform by citizens to discuss these issues. We show how the posting frequency, sentiment, and keyword trends have changed over time relative to the changes in the socio-political landscape of the region and the events surrounding them. Of particular interest is the keyword trend analysis that shows that blogs are being used to discuss issues associated with quality of life factors and interest in migration away from Venezuela as a result of the crisis. We believe that this study can be used as a starting point to show the value of analyzing blogs in helping to identify humanitarian needs, in facilitating assistance efforts, and in drafting policy decisions.

Pages: 70 to 81

Copyright: Copyright (c) to authors, 2018. Used with permission.

Publication date: June 30, 2018

Published in: journal

ISSN: 1942-2652

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