How [not] to caffeinate a political group: Parent post influence on conversational network structure

Alison N. Novak, Emmanuel Koku

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

1 Scopus citations


The attempted assassination of Representative Gabrielle Giffords in Arizona on January 8, 2011 spurred a surge of media reflection and criticism of the Tea Party Patriots and their violent rhetoric. The Coffee Party, created in 2010 as an oppositional force to the Tea Party, spent the days following the shooting discussing the various social, political, and moral aspects of the violence on their Facebook page. This chapter is part of an ongoing investigation of language in politically oriented online forums. Here, the 24 parent posts and following Facebook conversations are studied to investigate a connection between post sentiment and network structure. Using communication accommodation theory, Linguistic Inquiry Word Count (LIWC), and network analysis, a relationship is located between social, affective, cognitive, perceptual, and biological constructs and network measures of betweeness and core/periphery size. This chapter has implications regarding online network structures, new methods in Internet research, and online political activity research.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationHandbook of Research on Political Activism in the Information Age
PublisherIGI Global
Number of pages18
ISBN (Electronic)9781466660687
ISBN (Print)9781466660670
StatePublished - May 31 2014
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Social Sciences(all)


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