Text analysis methods for misinformation-related research on Finnish language twitter

Jari Jussila, Anu Helena Suominen, Atte Partanen, Tapani Honkanen

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Abstract

The dissemination of disinformation and fabricated content on social media is growing. Yet little is known of what the functional Twitter data analysis methods are for languages (such as Finnish) that include word formation with endings and word stems together with derivation and compounding. Furthermore, there is a need to understand which themes linked with misinformation—and the concepts related to it—manifest in different countries and language areas in Twitter discourse. To address this issue, this study explores misinformation and its related concepts: Disinformation, fake news, and propaganda in Finnish language tweets. We utilized (1) word cloud clustering, (2) topic modeling, and (3) word count analysis and clustering to detect and analyze misinformation-related concepts and themes connected to those concepts in Finnish language Twitter discussions. Our results are two-fold: (1) those concerning the functional data analysis methods and (2) those about the themes connected in discourse to the misinformation-related concepts. We noticed that each utilized method individually has critical limitations, especially all the automated analysis methods processing for the Finnish language, yet when combined they bring value to the analysis. Moreover, we discovered that politics, both internal and external, are prominent in the Twitter discussions in connection with misinformation and its related concepts of disinformation, fake news, and propaganda.

Original languageEnglish
Article number157
Number of pages16
JournalFuture Internet
Volume13
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2021
Publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

Keywords

  • Disinformation
  • Fake news
  • Finland
  • Finnish language
  • Infodemic
  • Misinformation
  • Propaganda
  • Social media
  • Twitter

Publication forum classification

  • Publication forum level 0

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Networks and Communications

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