Hate speech, incivility, and negativity in user comments

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Hate speech, incivility, and negativity have repeatedly been described as one of the defining features of online communication, particularly in the context of discussions on social media platforms or journalistic websites. Being a Co-PI in the collaborative project KISTRA, my research in this area primarily deals with questions related to how ‘ordinary’ users perceive, react to, and engage with hate speech they encounter on social media. Moreover, I have conducted empirical projects that investigate how platform, post, and person characteristics influence the use of uncivil language in political Twitter comments, how hateful alt-right fringe communities actually are, or how negative user comments shape journalistic quality perceptions of exposed users. To comprehensively capture these phenomena, I have worked with a variety of methods in this research area: From ‘classic’ online experiments to qualitative remote self-confrontation interviews and automated text analyses of millions of comments.