Datafication of Public Opinion and the Public Sphere

Datafication of Public Opinion and the Public Sphere

How Extraction Replaced Expression of Opinion

By Slavko Splichal

The book, anchored in stimulating debates about the enlightenment ideas of publicness, analyses historical changes in the core phenomena of publicness: possibilities, conditions and obstacles to developing a public sphere in which publics create, articulate and express public opinion by means of reflexive publicity within an established democratic public culture.

PDF, 250 Pages

ISBN:9781839984518

July 2022

£25.00, $40.00

EPUB, 250 Pages

ISBN:9781839984525

July 2022

£25.00, $40.00

  • About This Book
  • Reviews
  • Author Information
  • Series
  • Table of Contents
  • Links
  • Podcasts

About This Book

The book, anchored in stimulating debates on enlightenment ideas of the public that culminated and ended in the early 20th century, focuses on historical changes in the core phenomena of publicness: possibilities, conditions and obstacles to developing a public sphere in which publics create, articulate and express public opinion by means of reflexive publicity within an established democratic public culture. Specifically, it is focused on three central topics:

  • a general historical transformation from “opining” – essentially some people’s view of what “the public” thought – through the identification of “public opinion” in opinion polls, up to the contemporary establishment of “what people think/want” using computer-based analysis of the big data available from digital records, in which the enlightenment idea of public expression of opinion has been replaced by the technology of extracting opinions; 
  • the origins and consequences, and the similarities and differences of the rise and fall of two related concepts – public opinion and the public sphere – in historically particular periods, which have in common that they both lie in the boundary area between normative-theoretical and empirical orientation and suffer from unreliable definition and operationalization, which can only be resolved by a closer connection between the two concepts and areas.
  • a specific historical intervention created by the domestication of the German concept Öffenntlichkeit in English as “the public sphere,” heralding a new critical impetus in theory and research of publicness at a time when critical social thought sharply criticised and even abandoned the notion of public opinion due to its predominantly administrative use.

The book seeks to transcend the division into normative-critical theoretical conceptualisation and “constructive” empirical application in the social sciences to show how critical theory can be empirically applicable and empirical research normatively constructive, and to demonstrate the need for greater connectivity between them. 

Reviews

No reviews for this title.

Author Information

Slavko Splichal is Professor of Communication and Public Opinion at the University of Ljubljana’s Faculty of Social Sciences, fellow of the Slovenian Academy of Sciences and Arts and member of Academia Europaea. He is founder and director of the European Institute for Communication and Culture and editor of its journal Javnost – The Public

Series

No series for this title.

Table of Contents

Introduction; The Rise of Public Opinion as “The Voice of a People”; Radical Beginnings; Seeds of Doubt; Conceptual Challenges and Controversies in Sociology and Political Science; Quantification of Public Opinion and the Disempowerment of the Public; The Quantitative Revolution in Social Sciences; Polling: Operationalisation, Emanation or Negation of Public Opinion?; The “Curse of Translation”: The Invisible Becomes Visible; Re-Emergence of Publicness in “The Public Sphere”; Conceptual Controversies Over the Public Sphere; The Complexity of Publicness: Öffentlichkeit Vs. the Public Sphere; The Deliberative Turn in the Public Sphere and the Loss of the Public; Antagonists, Agonists, Mini-Publics and Publics as Actors in the Public Sphere; Datafication of the Public Sphere and Threats to Publicness; The Rise of Opinion Mining; Opinion Mining Vs. Polling; Digitisation and Algorithmisation of Communication; Critical Epistemic Value of Publicness and Public-Worthiness; The Importance of News and Socialisation of Journalism; From Newsworthiness to Public-Worthiness; Rearticulating the Critical Epistemic Value of Publicness: VARMIL; References; Index.

Links

No Podcasts for this title.

Latest Tweets

  • 'Start Me Up and Keep Me Growing: Management Learnings from the Rolling Stones' by Bertold Bär-Bouyssiere is finall… https://t.co/CNVRTj5DSJ

    - 11:26:33 on 16/06/2022
  • At @NorwayinUK last week Geir-Egil Løken, Svein Tore Bergestuen, Asbjørn Rachlew discussed their new Anthem publica… https://t.co/TnPH4u4wMD

    - 11:26:33 on 01/06/2022
  • RT @DrToddLandman: New book with @AnthemPress coming this July! Six years of podcasts crafted into a book: https://t.co/WB8ShDg3Hz #humanri…

    - 11:26:33 on 01/04/2022
  • 'In Defense of Reason After Hegel' by Richard Dien Winfield is finally here! It undermines the assault on truth per… https://t.co/ae2w59DCDR

    - 11:26:33 on 31/03/2022
  • Out now: 'Gender, Sexuality and Feminism in Pakistani Urdu Writing' by Amina Yaqin. This book sets out an unconvent… https://t.co/Mt59YdJfbG

    - 11:26:33 on 31/03/2022
  • Tune-in to a discussion with Markos Kounalakis on his latest book, 'Freedom Isn't Free' moderated by Bill Whalen.… https://t.co/IxQg3aSR3E

    - 11:26:33 on 31/03/2022
  • Out now! 'Sounding Prose' by Natascha Veldhorst. This book is about the presence of music in novels. More specifica… https://t.co/qYdKWGTaIb

    - 11:26:33 on 30/03/2022
  • 'Logos and Life' by Roger Teichmann is finally here! The essays cover topics in philosophy of mind, philosophy of… https://t.co/0Rl1Rgdgp4

    - 11:26:33 on 30/03/2022
  • 'The Whole Durn Human Comedy' by Joseph McBride is finally here! This is a groundbreaking, incisive critical study… https://t.co/gy4cLTpRaG

    - 11:26:33 on 23/03/2022
  • Out now! 'Emerging Thoughts in Disability and Humanness' by Elizabeth DePoy & Stephen French Gilson. Find out more… https://t.co/sYvBWYTLlU

    - 11:26:33 on 22/03/2022

Comodo SSL