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Has COVID-19 promoted or discouraged a European Public Sphere? Comparative analysis of the Twitter interactions of German, French, Italian and Spanish MEPSs during the pandemic

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2021-01-01
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Unniversidad de Navarra
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This comparative research analyses the political discussion through social media of the top list German, French, Italian and Spanish Members of the European Parliament during COVID-19 crisis times. Through content analysis, the article focuses on Twitter behaviours during a pandemic crisis period (March 23 to April 23, 2020). The study that analyses up to 14 (first listed MEPs) Twitter accounts and a total N of 2101 tweets looks at clarifying if the COVID-19 pandemic has promoted or discouraged the growth of a European Public Sphere. The results show that audience involvement depended on certain online conducts of the MEP rather than on his or her constant activity. Those behaviours produced as well that the COVID-19 debate was mostly restricted to the political elite, who neither allow European civil society to take part in the discussion or communicate to the general public with the aim of shaping a European Public Sphere
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Twitter, Political discussion, Pandemic, Covid-19, European union, European parliament, Social media, Political communication, Public sphere, Political discussion
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Tuñón Navarro, J. & Carral-Vilar, U. (2021). Has COVID-19 promoted or discouraged a European public sphere? Comparative analysis of the Twitter interactions of German, French, Italian and Spanish MEPSs during the pandemic. Comunicacion Y Sociedad, 34(3), 135-151.