American Economic Journal: Applied Economics
no. 3, July 2023
We study whether social media can amplify antiminority sentiment with a focus on Donald Trump's political rise. Using an instrumental variable strategy based on Twitter's early adopters at the South by Southwest festival in 2007, we find that higher Twitter use in a county is associated with a sizeable increase in anti-Muslim hate crimes after the 2016 presidential primaries. Trump's tweets about Muslims predict increases in xenophobic tweets by his followers, cable news mentions of Muslims, and hate crimes on the following days. These results suggest that social media content can affect real-life outcomes.
Müller, Karsten, and Carlo Schwarz.
"From Hashtag to Hate Crime: Twitter and Antiminority Sentiment."
American Economic Journal: Applied Economics,
Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior
Economics of Minorities, Races, Indigenous Peoples, and Immigrants; Non-labor Discrimination
Illegal Behavior and the Enforcement of Law
Cultural Economics: Religion