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How the Internet Affects Political Communication of Individuals - A Longitudinal Survey of Onliners and Offliners
Unformatted Document Text:  ICA-6-10602 6 communication available equally to everyone. In this table you can see only the main conventional communicative activities. Table 1: Differences Between Internet Users and Non-Users; Only Conventional Activities ( ) Form Strength of Effect Information Communication Reading Newspaper -.12 Watching TV-news .16 Watching political TV-magazins .11 Interpersonal Communication Contacting politicians .25 Talking about politics .25 Trying to convince friends n.s. Participation Communication Participating in demonstrations .35 Participating in assemblies .26 Takingaction in assemblies n.s. Contacting local administration n.s. Writing letters to the editor n.s. Signing petitions .16 With respect to these conventional media, significant differences between internet users and non-users can be observed in most of the political activities. Data show that online-users are more active politically even in conventional ways of communication and participation - with newspaper reading as the only exception. 4.2 Changes of Social Divides in Political Communication Cross sectional analyses of our data show differences between social groups in access to and in usage of the internet. We will skip this perspective and start off with a longitudinal analysis: Our data show that the divide along age and educational level diminishes.

Authors: Emmer, Martin. and Vowe, Gerhard.
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ICA-6-10602
6
communication available equally to everyone. In this table you can see only the main
conventional communicative activities.
Table 1: Differences Between Internet Users and Non-Users; Only
Conventional Activities ( )
Form
Strength of Effect
Information Communication
Reading Newspaper
-.12
Watching TV-news
.16
Watching political TV-magazins
.11
Interpersonal Communication
Contacting politicians
.25
Talking about politics
.25
Trying to convince friends
n.s.
Participation Communication
Participating in demonstrations
.35
Participating in assemblies
.26
Takingaction in assemblies
n.s.
Contacting local administration
n.s.
Writing letters to the editor
n.s.
Signing petitions
.16
With respect to these conventional media, significant differences between internet users and
non-users can be observed in most of the political activities. Data show that online-users are
more active politically even in conventional ways of communication and participation - with
newspaper reading as the only exception.
4.2 Changes of Social Divides in Political Communication
Cross sectional analyses of our data show differences between social groups in access to and
in usage of the internet. We will skip this perspective and start off with a longitudinal
analysis: Our data show that the divide along age and educational level diminishes.


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