Dynamics Of Online Toxicity In The Asia-Pacific Region

Thomas Marcoux, Adewale Obadimu, Nitin Agarwal

Contact: amobadimu@ualr.edu

The adverse effect of online toxicity on social interactions is enormous. The proliferation of smart devices and mobile applications has further exacerbated these nefarious acts on various social media plat- forms. Toxic behavior can have a negative impact on a community or dissuade others from joining a community by perceiving it as a hostile or unfriendly environment. Despite the rich research on understanding toxicity on a global scale, there is currently a dearth of systematic research regarding toxicity within the user-generated content on online platforms. To further the understanding of this phenomenon, this paper proposes a precise definition and a case study in an applicable, real world, and large- scale scenario. Using blog posts related to Asia-Pacific political conflicts, we study the toxicity associated with the collected online discourse and pair this analysis with visualizations of the related topic models in order to better understand what type of discourse results in online toxicity. Our analysis shows the potential of the toxicity metric as a tool to understand online events by isolating toxic actors and identifying patterns.

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