The Dark Side of the Web: Italian Right-Wing Extremist Groups and the Internet

Caiani, Manuela and Parenti, Linda (2009) The Dark Side of the Web: Italian Right-Wing Extremist Groups and the Internet. South European Society and Politics, 14 (3), pp. 273-294. DOI: 10.1080/13608740903342491

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Focusing on extreme-right organisations in Italy, this article addresses the specific use of the Internet by extremist groups and its potential role for the formation of collective identity, organisational contacts and mobilisation. The analysis includes both political parties and non-party organisations, even violent groups. Through the combination of Social Network Analysis (SNA) of web linkages amongst approximately 100 organisations, with a formalised content analysis of those websites, we argue that various forms of usage of the Internet by right-wing organisations are indeed on the rise, with an increase not only in the number of extremist websites but also in the exploitation of the Internet for diffusing propaganda, promoting ‘virtual communities’ of debate, fundraising, and organising and mobilising political campaigns. The various specificities of the usage of the Internet by extreme-right organisations are demonstrated and linked to offline reality. (author's abstract)

Item Type: Article in Academic Journal
Keywords: Right wing extremism, Network analysis, Websites content analysis, ICTs, Political violence, Radicalisation
Date Deposited: 28 May 2015 08:56
Last Modified: 01 Apr 2016 14:19
DOI: 10.1080/13608740903342491
ISSN: 1360-8746

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