Toward ‘Cultures of Engagement’? An exploratory comparison of engagement patterns on Facebook news posts
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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Original versionNew Media & Society, 2021. 10.1177/14614448211009246
Information production, dissemination, and consumption are contingent upon cultural and financial dimensions. This study attempts to find cultures of engagement that reflect how audiences engage with news posts made by either commercial or state-owned news outlets on Facebook. To do so, we collected over a million news posts (n = 1,173,159) produced by 482 news outlets in three Scandinavian countries (Denmark, Norway, and Sweden) and analyzed over 69 million interactions across three metrics of engagement (i.e. comments, likes, and shares). More concretely, we investigate whether the patterns of engagement follow distinct patterns across national boundaries and type of outlet ownership. While we are skeptical of metrics of engagement as markers of specific cultures of engagement, our results show that there are clear differences in how readers engage with news posts depending on the country of origin and whether they are fully state-owned or private-owned outlets.