Effects of Social Media Echo Chamber, Political Polarization and Racial Division: a Case Study of Malaysia's State Elections 2023



Cha, Chun Chuan (2023) Effects of Social Media Echo Chamber, Political Polarization and Racial Division: a Case Study of Malaysia's State Elections 2023. Final Year Project (Bachelor), Tunku Abdul Rahman University of Management and Technology.

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In the digital age, social media has evolved into a critical force shaping the political landscape, particularly in the context of Malaysia's 2023 state elections. This study seeks to investigate the effects of social media echo chambers on Malaysian political views and the role they play in reinforcing political polarization and racial divisions. The negative impacts of the echo chamber effect have raised significant concerns, with fears that these phenomena may exacerbate polarization, erode mutual understanding, and lead to a scenario where individuals lack any shared perspective. In contrast, other researchers reveal that most people live in a “high-choice media environment”, and the echo chambers affect only a relatively smaller portion of people than expected. Moreover, there is limited research about echo chambers and polarization outside of the United States context. Building upon prior research, this research addresses the contrasting results and limitations of previous studies. It presents a rationale for new research aimed at understanding this complex phenomenon in Malaysia. This research approach combines qualitative methods, including social media content analysis, focus group interviews of 3 main races (Malay, Chinese, Indian) and in-depth interviews with political experts. This qualitative approach will provide a comprehensive understanding of the phenomenon, exploring nuanced aspects of social media echo chambers. Polarization over race, religion, and reform has afflicted Malaysia for decades and powerfully shaped its electoral politics. The implications of this study offers insights into the role of social media in shaping political and racial divisions in Malaysia. The findings have the potential to inform policy and communication strategies, fostering a more cohesive and resilient political landscape. By addressing this critical issue, we aim to contribute to social cohesion and stability in the country.

Item Type: Final Year Project
Subjects: Political Science > Political science (General)
Language and Literature > Literature (General) > Broadcasting
Faculties: Faculty of Communication and Creative Industries > Bachelor of Communication (Honours) in Broadcasting
Depositing User: Library Staff
Date Deposited: 17 Jan 2024 08:34
Last Modified: 17 Jan 2024 08:43
URI: https://eprints.tarc.edu.my/id/eprint/27524