What if there’s a high demand and very little supply in the information economy?
Data voids as coined by Golebiewski and Boyd (2019),
are pockets on the internet where very little information
available causes disproportionately high overrepresentation of
relevant but unreliable sources. While data voids themselves are
not inherently problematic, the lack of competing information magnifies
any content that enters; opening potential for misinformation, conspiracy
indoctrination, and manipulation. This research investigates the presence of
potential data voids surrounding United States, political topics within the
Latinx-oriented Facebook communities (pew research).
Data voids that have been explicitly researched are short tail, meaning that
a lack of information is already acknowledged and more information will be produced
to clear up most confusion surrounding that topic. Alternatively, this research investigates
long tail data voids, where a lack of information persists, and when unaddressed,
exacerbates particular ideologies.
Data incorporated for this study comes from Crowdtangle, a public insights
tool owned and operated by Facebook. Facebook groups and pages are identified
if they are A) Facebook pages of Latinx-oriented news media outlets described by the
Latino News Media Research group at City University of New York or B) Have
explicit Latinx (Peruvian, Cuban, Hispanic) and United States (New York, Biden, Democrat)
identfiers in the title. All groups and pages are public.
Posts are collected from all identified Latinx-groups within the time frame of August
18, 2020 (Joe Biden's Democratic Nomination) until the election on November 3rd, 2020.
Posts are then faceted into three groups depending on group and page name:
█ Geo-Cultural:if the United
States identifier lacks political terminology
█ Political: if the United States
identifier is political
█ News: if the page is associated with a Latino