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Social capital in online hashtag communities: analyzing #RubyPH

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posted on 2021-05-22, 14:52 authored by Jelena Lazarevic
This Major Research Paper uses theories of online community and social capital to explore how hashtag communities are formed, and whether or not social capital can be created in hashtag communities during a natural disaster. The focus is on #RubyPH, a hashtag created during Typhoon Ruby, which landed in the Philippines on December 6, 2014 (Malm, 2014). First, this Major Research Paper demonstrates the presence of social capital within hashtag communities emerging during Typhoon Ruby. Furthermore, demonstrating whether or not information shared by different parties can have an affect on the social capital present. This was done with a deductive content analysis of a sample of 2,000 tweets containing the hashtag #RubyPH. The findings of this study demonstrate that there is evidence of social capital within #RubyPH and that non-governmental organizations, news media, and governments contribute to social capital online. Keywords: online community, hashtag community, social capital, networked collectivism, natural disasters, twitter, typhoon ruby, typhoon hagupit





Master of Professional Communication


Professional Communication

Granting Institution

Ryerson University

LAC Thesis Type