Discourses of Climate Delay in American Reddit Discussions

Aline Sylla, Felix Glawe, Dirk Braun, Mihail Padev, Sina Schäfer, Albina Ahmetaj, Lilian Kojan, André Calero Valdez*

*Corresponding author for this work


Arguments that seek to justify the lack of measures to combat anthropogenic climate change have been identified in public discourse and characterized into four distinct Discourses of Climate Delay. Reddit provides a useful source of data for discourse research. While discourse on other social media platforms is prone to polarization due to echo-chamber effects, the prevalence of these effects on Reddit is disputed. We used the Reddit and pushshift APIs to acquire data from posts on the popular political communities r/democrats and r/Republican. We then used intercoder-validated deductive qualitative content analysis based on the defined Discourses of Climate Delay to identify if Reddit users employ different Discourses of Climate Delay based on their political group affiliation. We find that members of r/Republican tend to employ arguments based on preventing change, while those in r/democrats preferentially use arguments that emphasize the complexity necessary for implementing structural changes.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationDisinformation in Open Online Media
EditorsFrancesca Spezzano, Adriana Amaral, Davide Ceolin, Lisa Fazio, Edoardo Serra
Number of pages15
Publication date04.10.2022
ISBN (Print)978-3-031-18252-5
ISBN (Electronic)978-3-031-18253-2
Publication statusPublished - 04.10.2022
EventMultidisciplinary International Symposium on
Disinformation in Open Online Media
- Boise State University, United States
Duration: 11.10.202212.10.2022


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