CeDEM Asia, Keynotes, Day 1 (Daegu)

The 3rd CeDEM Asia started on the 7th of December in Daegu (South Korea). CeDEM brings together researchers, practitioneers and activists from many contexts in the region. President Faulhammer welcomed the participants and mentioned Korea as one of the leading industries in information technologies as well as the dedicated open access policy of CeDEM. Since the beginning of the conference series, emphasis was on the paradigm shifts due to ICTs and the development of civic involvement in society, and the creation of a network of tolerance, innovative spirit and innovation. The Centre for E-Governance has come to stand to a leading research group with many international cooperations and projects, and CeDEM Asia is an important part for the engagement of Danube University in the Asien region. Prof. Parycek emphasised that CeDEM Asia has a focus on communication and networks. Prof. Skoric mentioned the national context of the conference series and invited people to suggest cities for the next one. So if you are in Asia and want to host CeDEM 2018, do get in touch!


Rajiv Aricat and Rich Ling: Rag-picking and mobile telephony in Myanmar


The Myanmar society has seen an ongoing process of liberalization and is moving towards a mixed economy after the country was under military rule. In the presented study mobile communication was studied since 2014 in six months of field work. Rag-picking  refers to picking up different types of waste.The mobile phone and micro-entrepreneurship increaes information flow and reduces risks, due to tremendous change in the affordance of sim cards and large local integrators. There is an active market in many types of scrap materials. Demand signals go out to large scale integrators. People who are collecting in an area usually bring their stuff with them and sell them to the nearest place. They are usually too poor to buy phones and are often marginalized minority groups. They do not know whether they can sell their stuff, and mobiles help with coordinating the demand. However, that also means that those with no phones are stuck with the stuff that is not saleable. Thus, diffusion of communication helps some groups and marignalizes others.

Eun-Ju Lee: What makes politicians (look) more authentic on twitter?

Twitter has become an indispensable component in politicians’ media mix in South Korea. How authentic politicians appear to be online can be studied by utilizing the the concept of social presence, that is the “as-if” feeling of direct communication with the mediated communicator. Will twitter messages believe that they are engaging in one-to-one conversation, compared to newspaper articles? Yes and no 🙂 There seem to be different factors in place according to transportability. Twitter can enhance social presence but only together with high transportability. Social presence usually can increase policy agreement, but this depends on previous attitudes about a particular politician. So, if people like a politician to begin with, the more likely the social presence of the politician made a difference in policy agreement.


Comparing messages with similar content between TV and twitter. Counterarguing was an additional indicator of perceived authenticity. People were more likely to feel that they interact with a politician when the medium is TV. Prior attitudes predict whether people would engage in counterarguing. Those who disliked the politician were more likely to counterargue on TV than on Twitter. Within Twitter, people can perceive someone as more authentic on Twitter if messages are personalised. When messages are personalized, politician’s tweets lead to better message recognition (people rememberes messages better). Message personalisation has only a limited effect on social presence and perceived intimacy. Less affiliative individuals responded negativeley when they read personalised tweets.

Another study addressed the conditions under which intimate disclosure of a politician may work or not. Gender stereotypes might come into play: Intimate disclosure might backfire on woman (“they lack leadership skills”). Looking at how people perceive personalised messages, they enhanced vote intention, but only for the male candidate. Personalised messages were perceived more intimate for both genders, yet it only had an impact on positive evaluation only when the speaker was male.

Looking at how tweets of politicians are criticised on Twitter, Twitter blunders definitely seem to damage the speaker’s reputation.

Further research should tackle the question what contributes to the shaping of normative expectancy? Further cross-validation should be done with field data, f.i. by looking at behavioral traces of social media users.


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