#WashTheHate: Understanding the Prevalence of Anti-Asian Prejudice on Twitter During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Brittany Wheeler, Seong Jung, Maria Camila N. Barioni, Monika Purohit, Deborah L. Hall, Yasin N. Silva

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

Prejudice and hate directed toward Asian individuals has increased in prevalence and salience during the COVID-19 pandemic, with notable rises in physical violence. Concurrently, as many governments enacted stay-at-home mandates, the spread of anti-Asian content increased in online spaces, including social media. In the present study, we investigated temporal and geographical patterns in social media content relevant to anti-Asian prejudice during the COVID-19 pandemic. Using the Twitter Data Collection API, we queried over 13 million tweets posted between January 30, 2020, and April 30, 2021, for both negative (e.g., #kungflu) and positive (e.g., #stopAAPIhate) hashtags and keywords related to anti-Asian prejudice. In a series of descriptive analyses, we found differences in the frequency of negative and positive keywords based on geographic location. Using burst detection, we also identified distinct increases in negative and positive content in relation to key political tweets and events. These largely exploratory analyses shed light on the role of social media in the expression and proliferation of prejudice as well as positive responses online.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 2022 IEEE/ACM International Conference on Advances in Social Networks Analysis and Mining, ASONAM 2022
EditorsJisun An, Chelmis Charalampos, Walid Magdy
PublisherInstitute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Inc.
Pages484-491
Number of pages8
ISBN (Electronic)9781665456616
DOIs
StatePublished - 2022
Externally publishedYes
Event14th IEEE/ACM International Conference on Advances in Social Networks Analysis and Mining, ASONAM 2022 - Virtual, Online, Turkey
Duration: Nov 10 2022Nov 13 2022

Publication series

NameProceedings of the 2022 IEEE/ACM International Conference on Advances in Social Networks Analysis and Mining, ASONAM 2022

Conference

Conference14th IEEE/ACM International Conference on Advances in Social Networks Analysis and Mining, ASONAM 2022
Country/TerritoryTurkey
CityVirtual, Online
Period11/10/2211/13/22

Keywords

  • AAPI
  • COVID-19
  • Twitter
  • racism
  • social media

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Artificial Intelligence
  • Computer Networks and Communications
  • Information Systems
  • Information Systems and Management
  • Communication

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