ISSN 1016-1007 GPN2005600032
前期出版
前期出版
頁數:47﹣104 以瘟疫之名:探討公眾風險感知的 COVID-19 網路論述與詮釋,以批踢踢八卦板與政黑板為例 In the Name of the Pandemic: Exploring COVID-19 online discourse
研究論文
作者(中)
陳怡璇、劉桂君
作者(英)
Victoria Y. Chen, Anita K.C. Liu
關鍵詞(中)
公眾論述框架、主題網絡分析、主題模型分析、新冠肺炎
關鍵詞(英)
COVID-19, online discourse frames, topic modeling, topic network analysis
中文摘要
  本研究關注臺灣疫情初期的 COVID-19 網路論述,以了解民眾的風險感知以及對風險的解讀。本文觀察批踢踢八卦板與政黑板網友針對 COVID-19 討論什麼?如何討論?以了解臺灣 COVID-19 的公眾論述框架與網友關注的主題,以及各主題間的關聯。本研究借用概念隱喻理論與修辭生態學的觀點,擷取臺灣最大的網路論壇(批踢踢實業坊)的八卦板和政黑板中,與 COVID-19相關的主文與回文。研究方法使用主題模型與主題網絡分析(Analysis of Topic Model Network)近 208 萬筆資料。研究發現:八卦板與政黑板網友在 COVID-19 的討論,以中國為圓心,地理位置為軸線,依照地緣政治的層次,呈現臺灣防疫政治、兩岸關係、國際疫情三大論述框架。臺灣防疫政治框架關注臺灣內部的防疫政策與結果,較偏向泛政治的討論;兩岸關係上,呈現親中與反中的對立矛盾;國際疫情上,著重中國在國際政治角力的影響力。整體而言,八卦板與政黑板的 COVID-19 論述較少著墨於新興傳染疾病的認識或衛教訊息之討論。取而代之,疫情有如指責中國的借題發揮,實則製造危機感,樹立中國對臺敵意,建立臺灣的認同感。
英文摘要
Background: The coronavirus outbreak in 2020 has become one of the most important topics in international news. On March 12, 2020, the World Health Organization (WHO) announced COVID-19 as a pandemic, with more than two million confirmed cases worldwide. Taiwan is one of the closest countries to China, which is the epicenter of the disease. As of May 7, 2020, 440 people had been diagnosed with COVID-19, and six people have died. The relatively lower confirmed cases and deaths can offer valuable information about Taiwan’s containment of the virus.

Given the challenge of the global pandemic, the role of the media in presenting the crisis has become an important topic. In the context of a health crisis, previous studies contend that news coverage plays a significant role in influencing risk perception. Through the process of framing, communicators can define the problems (Nisbet, 2009) in the way of positioning and highlighting specific attributes over others. On the other hand, communicators potentially guide the audience to think and make judgments in accordance with news frames (Entman, 1993). Under these circumstances, news media coverage impacts public understanding and perceptions of the risks of COVID- 19, especially among people who watch and are exposed to it on a daily basis.

Social media users are important gatekeepers who amplify specific narratives by sharing news articles and engaging in online discussions (Brown, Yoo, & Johnson, 2019). While journalists are involved in the process of selecting and writing messages for distribution, nowadays, social media users contribute to selecting and redistributing specific content and creating new content (Odlum & Yoon, 2015). Studies also show that social media has become a principal sphere for exchanging information during the disease’s outbreak (Wong et al., 2021).

Purpose: This research explores how PTT Bulletin Board System (PTT) users in Taiwan conceive COVID-19, and how they perceive risk. In other words, we examine the online discourse related to COVID-19 and how people talk about it online. We further explore the ideology embedded in the discussions. Specifically, we adopt the conceptual metaphor theory to illustrate the hidden meaning in online discourses related to COVID-19. Building upon the concept of rhetorical ecologies, we also explore why and how specific topics draw public attention and become public agendas.

We extend the literature related to framing online public opinion in multiple ways. First, this study employs computational unsupervised text analysis, termed Analysis of Topic Model Networks (ANTMN) (Walter & Ophir, 2019), to study the online discourse surrounding COVID-19 and to explore the relationships among the topics. Prior works mainly focus on media frames regarding the epidemic, and most rely on deductive, theory-driven categories, where frames are pre-defined before analysis and then applied to texts. While informative, such a deductive approach is prone to researchers’ biases and may miss emerging frames that not found in the past (Walter & Ophir, 2019; van Gorp, 2010).

Furthermore, these frames are mostly general and fail to present the nuances of discussions during the global health crisis. By employing the new approach of framing study, ANTMN, we discover frames inductively and reduce such biases (Walter & Ophir, 2019). Building upon the frames of the discussions, we further adopt the conceptual metaphor theory and the concept of rhetorical ecologies to examine the ideology behind the frames in order to explain how the rhetorical technique contributes to the topic salience. Specifically, we ask the following.

RQ1: What are the frames of online discourse related to COVID-19?
RQ2: What topics are PTT Bulletin Board System (PTT) users most interested in?
RQ3: What are the relationships among the topics of online discourse?

Method: To answer the research questions about the theme of discussion of the COVID-19 pandemic, we examine posts along with comments using the keywords “COVID-19” (or “新冠肺炎” in Chinese) and “Wu Han virus” (“武
漢肺炎”) on PTT, which is a Reddit-like forum in Taiwan. The sampling time spans from December 2019 to August 2020. The total sample size is more than 208 million posts and comments. We employ the computational Analysis of Topic Model Networks (ANTMN) approach (Walter & Ophir, 2019) over half a year during the 2020 pandemic. ANTMN is a 3-step approach, consisting of modeling a topic model, calculating a network of topics based on their cooccurrence in documents, and clustering topics into themes using community detection algorithms.

Findings: Our analysis of more than 2 million texts find 50 topics of discussion clustered into three thematic clusters: Taiwanese pandemic-prevention politics, Taiwan-China relations, and international pandemic. The Taiwanese pandemic-prevention politics frame includes conversations surrounding prevention behavior related to wearing masks and staying at home for the public good. However, the most prominent topic covers political discussions about government measures, such as the debate between political figures and political parties. Based on the threat of China to Taiwan, The Taiwan-China relations frame describes the origin of COVID-19 and China’s responsibility for the pandemic. Under the international pandemic frame, online discourse revolves around the global pandemic under the influence of China’s political power over other countries. These three frames focus on China’s responsibility for the pandemic in a geopolitical sense: Taiwan domestic politics, Taiwan-China relations, and international politics. Overall, essential discussion about COVID-19 is scarce. The pandemic is merely an excuse for Taiwan to blame China for reconfiguring the Taiwanese identity.

Implications: The research demonstrates the multi-faceted nature of discussion at the intersection of health, science, and geopolitics. The discourse around the pandemic involves nationalism and political affiliation, showing a discussion that attempts to embed identity or political ideology and combine emotional needs (e.g., patriotism) with political messaging (discussing the political force of China over the WHO) and practical information (promoting Taiwan’s ability to contribute to the global effort by emphasizing its own innovation and public health infrastructure). This study helps further develop the metaphor theory and demonstrates its ability to establish new mechanisms of dialogue and influences during a time of global crisis.
796次下載
2023/ 夏
No.156
X

忘記您的密碼了?