PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractThe Internet has become a popular outlet for citizens to exercise their freedom of speech and engage in political discussion. However, the use of uncivil language online has become an increasingly common practice, in part due to specific characteristics of the Internet, such as increased anonymity. This study seeks to address if regional differences influence the incidence of online incivility in newspaper comment forums. Using a content analysis of a combined 2,604 newspaper comments, this study compares the incidence of incivility between the Arizona Daily Star and the Boston Globe to see if the commenters of one newspaper proved to be more "uncivil." The study results revealed that incivility occurred significantly more often in the Boston Globe than the Arizona Daily Star. By analyzing the specific regional factors characteristic of each newspaper, it may be possible to gain a better understanding of why such a difference occurred and ultimately why people use such language.
Degree ProgramHonors College