AUTNES Content Analysis of Party Facebook Pages 2013

Resource Type
Dataset : Survey and aggregate data
  • Müller, Wolfgang C. (Universität Wien)
  • Bodlos, Anita (Universität Wien)
  • Dolezal, Martin (Universität Wien)
  • Eder, Nikolaus (Universität Wien)
  • Ennser-Jedenastik, Laurenz (Universität Wien)
  • Kaltenegger, Matthias (Universität Wien)
  • Meyer, Thomas M. (Universität Wien)
  • Praprotnik, Katrin (Universität Wien)
  • Winkler, Anna Katharina (Universität Wien)
Publication Date
  • Principal investigator (Data Collector)
  • ZA:
    • Political Parties, Organizations
    • Communication, Public Opinion, Media
  • CESSDA Topic Classification:
    • Language and linguistics
    • Government, political systems and organisation
    • Elections
  • Abstract

    The AUTNES dataset on party Facebook pages contains information on parties’ Facebook posts during the six weeks of election campaign for the Austrian general election in 2013. Data collection took place in the autumn of 2015. We retrieved posts for all parties that passed the threshold for entering the parliament in 2013. Each post constitutes a unit of analysis. The coding procedure applies the AUTNES relational approach of recording subjects, predicates, and objects to party Facebook pages. The subject is the party or person that operates the Facebook page and is coded with the name (if an individual is present), organizational affiliation and appearance in the coding unit (text only, text and image, image only). There are two types of objects: issues and object actors. Issues are recorded by coders selecting from the AUTNES issue coding scheme the dominant policy issue and the dominant campaign issue in the coding unit. The issue predicate numerically records whether the subject’s position towards the policy issue is one of support, rejection, or conveys a neutral/ambivalent stance. Up to ten object actors are recorded from each coding unit in the same way as the subject actor, supplemented with an evaluation by the subject actor (positive, negative or neutral). In addition to the basic subject–predicate–object structure we code several more variables: character traits, party records as well as a description of every actor’s outfit. Moreover, the dataset contains variables describing the Facebook page, the coding unit as well as images and calls for (preference) votes or campaign participation visible at the Facebook postings. Topics: Variables referring to Facebook posting: web scraping: URL; type of Facebook page (party or candidate page); timestamp (date when the Facebook post was posted); text of the Facebook posting; links that were published in the posting; hashtags; number of likes that the Facebook posting got; number of comments that were published on the posting; number of shares of a posting; variables referring to Facebook posting: manual coding: the coder encounters technical problems; the posting contains a call for vote (for the author of the page); name of the respective candidate if the posting contains a call for a preference vote; call for campaign participation in general and on Facebook; the posting contains continuous text, a picture, a video; variables referring to the author (the party or the party leader (for the FPÖ) responsible for the Facebook page):organization of the Facebook site’s author; name of the author (only for Facebook pages of top candidates (thus Heinz-Christian Strache); the author is mentioned in the posting; author’s outfit (Facebook-sites operated by candidate); author’s characteristics (competence, character, leadership, appearance, not discernible); author’s record (no record, record referring to policy issue, record not referring to policy issue); variables referring to issues: coded campaign issue; predicate (author’s position towards the coded policy issue: reject/criticize, neutral, support); policy issue; reference to policy at the EU level; variables referring to up to ten object actors per posting: object actor was coded; names of the object actors if individuals; object actor’s organisation; appearance (object actor is mentioned in written form, as a picture or both); predicate (relation between the author of the homepage and the object actor: reject/criticize, neutral, support, picture); object actor’s outfit (if the posting contains a picture); object actor makes a reference to the coded campaign issue and to the coded policy issue; object actor’s characteristics (competence, character, leadership, appearance, not discernible); object actor’s record referring to policy issue or not; number of additional object actors that were not coded; variables referring to pictures: pictures of individuals that were not coded as object actors; groups of individuals (or category) in pictures (i.e. voter/people, political activist, woman, man, etc.); number of people (individuals of the respective category or group on the picture); the individuals on the picture support a party (reference to party x). Additionally coded was: ID, coder-ID.
Temporal Coverage
  • 2013-08-19 / 2013-09-28
Geographic Coverage
  • Austria (AT)
Sampled Universe
Party Facebook postings during the six weeks of election campaign for the Austrian general election in 2013 (postings for all parties that passed the threshold for entering the parliament in 2013. No postings for the BZÖ, who lost parliamentary representation in 2013, could be gathered. As the Freedom Party (FPÖ) does not operate a Facebook page, the account of the party leader Heinz-Christian Strache was analysed instead.)
Sampling Procedure Comment: Total universe/Complete Enumeration
Collection Mode
  • Content Coding
Data and File Information
  • Number of Variables: 160
A - Data and documents are released for academic research and teaching.
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Alternative Identifiers
  • ZA6882 (Type: ZA-No.)

Update Metadata: 2021-04-07 | Issue Number: 17 | Registration Date: 2017-01-02