Outrage 42 – The Trolls Among Us: Understanding and Mitigating Online Toxicity – Michalis Mamakos

Aired Jul 3, 2024

Tired of the negativity online, especially when it comes to politics? You’re not alone. This episode dives into a new study that challenges the idea that political topics themselves are to blame for the nastiness.

We’ll be talking to primary author of the study, Michalis Mamakos, about their surprising findings that suggest the problem might lie with the people who are drawn to these online discussions, not the discussions themselves.

Join us as we explore:

  • Why online political arguments can be so unpleasant.
  • The surprising truth behind the negativity.
  • What this means for the future of online political discourse.

Listen now and get ready to rethink what you thought you knew about online political arguments!

Michalis Mamakos is a Postdoctoral Scholar in the Department of Psychology at Northwestern University. He completed his Ph.D. in Computer Science at the same institution, following his undergraduate and master’s studies in Greece.

Dr. Mamakos’ research focuses on digital democracy through the lens of computational social science.

Links

Michalis Mamakos (personal site)

The social media discourse of engaged partisans is toxic even when politics are irrelevant (PNAS paper)


💬 What was your big takeaway or insight gained from this episode? Comment below.

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Outrage Overload is a podcast about the outrage industry, my journey to discover what it is, how it affects us, and what we can do about it.