PhD paper on The Last Jedi hate [directed at Rian Johnson]: mostly alt-right trolls, incl. Russians

#1
Interesting paper here, showing the politicization of culture and fandom. Rian Johnson tweets it matches his experience.

https://www.researchgate.net/public...pop_culture_through_social_media_manipulation

Clipped from the abstract:
The results of the study show that among those who address The Last Jedi director Rian Johnson directly on Twitter to express their dissatisfaction, more than half are bots, trolls/sock puppets or political activists using the debate to propagate political messages supporting extreme right-wing causes and the discrimination of gender, race or sexuality. A number of these users appear to be Russian trolls.
(PDF) Weaponizing the haters: The Last Jedi and the strategic politicization of pop culture through social media manipulation.. Available from: https://www.researchgate.net/public..._social_media_manipulation?platform=hootsuite [accessed Oct 01 2018].
 
#2
Topic Title: "Last Jedi haters are alt-right trolls and russian bots"
Actual Data: "Twitter users who directly messaged Rian Johnson to troll Last Jedi are mostly alt-right and russian bots."

These are substantially different conclusions.
 
#3
"Last Jedi haters are alt-right trolls and russian bots"
"Twitter users who directly messaged Rian Johnson to troll Last Jedi are mostly alt-right and russian bots."

These statements are substantially different.
Yeah. I like to think the majority of people who didn't like TLJ weren't enough a dick to try to directly contact him about it.
 

shira

Community Resetter
Member
#6
Do normal citizens @Rian Johnson to tell him his movie rocked/sucked?

I don't know anyone that does this.
 
#9
How does this relate to other pop culture subjects? Can the same or similar patterns be observed in the response to movies like Infinity War or Jurassic World?
 
#12
Topic Title: "Last Jedi haters are alt-right trolls and russian bots"
Actual Data: "Twitter users who directly messaged Rian Johnson to troll Last Jedi are mostly alt-right and russian bots."

These are substantially different conclusions.
Thank you. This was my exact first thought.

Luke likes beer. He likes to drink beer. He likes beer.
Jedi like beer. Sith like beer. Everyone likes beer.
 
#14
The critical reception of TLJ is one of the most fascinating things I've ever seen from a culture perspective. Granted, I don't make a full study of this, but what other movie has generated such a reaction that academic research papers consider it a valid topic to explore?

How people can think BvS is a good movie is the only other such topic that warrants such research.

Just kidding :p

Mostly :0
 

Benji

US Sales Insider
Member
#17
Its essentially stating the most hardcore crazies that went out of their way to directly attack Rian fall into those groups, which isn't really surprising at all

It's not saying people that didnt like the movie in general fall into these categories
 
#18
Holy misleading thread title.

Yeah. I like to think the majority of people who didn't like TLJ weren't enough a dick to try to directly contact him about it.
I'm not even enough of a dick to really talk here about my dislike of the movie. Let the people who enjoy it enjoy it. There is zero point in talking about my dislike of it online.
 
#23
Topic Title: "Last Jedi haters are alt-right trolls and russian bots"
Actual Data: "Twitter users who directly messaged Rian Johnson to troll Last Jedi are mostly alt-right and russian bots."

These are substantially different conclusions.
1. That's why it's good to not only read the thread title. The OP quote is more explicit. 2. The goal appears to be to affect discord in American culture, not just "bitch at Rian" so let's not pretend like the effects of this are isolated to his Twitter alone. Other people read those comments and the hate spreads.
 
#24
I've clearly talked to enough articulate non-bot haters of TLJ that I can't dismiss the whole backlash as being a psych warfare operation.

It could have bent the direction of the discussion though. I do think people take more of their cues from their peers than they realize. If we already think lots of people hate the film, then it affects how kind we are towards things that might otherwise have been tiny nitpicks.
 
#25
Topic Title: "Last Jedi haters are alt-right trolls and russian bots"
Actual Data: "Twitter users who directly messaged Rian Johnson to troll Last Jedi are mostly alt-right and russian bots."

These are substantially different conclusions.
Another misleading thread title.
 
#28
Goddamn, Russians are even after Star Wars?
Influencing young people pays off much more as you can steer an entire generation to the far right.

Once people are too far gone you essentially have to wait for them to die off and hopefully replace them with a better one.

There was a KGB defector in the 80s who talked about this.

It's one of the best SW films too
 
#31
I've clearly talked to enough articulate non-bot haters of TLJ that I can't dismiss the whole backlash as being a psych warfare operation.

It could have bent the direction of the discussion though. I do think people take more of their cues from their peers than they realize.
This is the important throughline here. And you guys think that alt-right trolls and Russians are only on Twitter, or do you think maybe this is just a snapshot of a larger social media movement?
 
#32
Yeah. I like to think the majority of people who didn't like TLJ weren't enough a dick to try to directly contact him about it.
I've always believed that when most people like or dislike a film they either say their piece once and then move on with their life. They don't sit around contiuing to talk about something they hate. It takes a special kind of person, in a negative way, to do that. Or if you're trying to make money off the hate like these youtubers.

That bots are doing the lions share on twitter isn't surprising. Easy to weaponize bots like this.
 
#35
Topic Title: "Last Jedi haters are alt-right trolls and russian bots"
Actual Data: "Twitter users who directly messaged Rian Johnson to troll Last Jedi are mostly alt-right and russian bots."

These are substantially different conclusions.
I might be misunderstanding your usage of "directly messaged", but the paper actually concerns tweets that were @rianjohnson, not DMs.
Using Twitter’s Advanced Search functionality, I retrieved 1273 tweets tweeted directly at the director’s Twitter handle, “@rianjohnson” between December 13, 2017 and July 20, 2018.

(PDF) Weaponizing the haters: The Last Jedi and the strategic politicization of pop culture through social media manipulation.. Available from: https://www.researchgate.net/public..._social_media_manipulation?platform=hootsuite [accessed Oct 01 2018].
It's unfortunate that people are getting upset about the framing of the article, since the body of it is still interesting.
 
#38
I remember in the The Director and the Jedi doc, Rian Johnson mentions that he was being trolled by Russian accounts during principal photography ha
 
#40
The critical reception of TLJ is one of the most fascinating things I've ever seen from a culture perspective. Granted, I don't make a full study of this, but what other movie has generated such a reaction that academic research papers consider it a valid topic to explore?

How people can think BvS is a good movie is the only other such topic that warrants such research.

Just kidding :p

Mostly :0
The last jedi is probably the most prominent example of a hollywood movie that directly confronts toxic masculinity, on top of being very directly against nazis at a time where the tolerance of nazism is becoming increasingly normalized, (just debate their ideas) in the U.S. thanks to the radicalization of young, (usually caucasian), men. That normalization has gotten so bad that some people actually think that SW used to be subtle about it's anti fascism message, you know what with the enemy faction being named stormtroopers.....Quite fascinating indeed.

Its essentially stating the most hardcore crazies that went out of their way to directly attack Rian fall into those groups, which isn't really surprising at all

It's not saying people that didnt like the movie in general fall into these categories
^^^^^^
 
#41
The misleading thread title shows that the Russians have won.
More like the fact that you guys think this is isolated to Twitter shows why the Russians have won and CONTINUE to win.

You guys think this shit isn't a big deal when Trump is in the WH. Come on.
 
#42
Regardless of who and how many, there is definitely some weird "politics" behind a portion of the people who hate this movie. It started with TFA, with their being a black and female lead, and has lingered around the franchise ever since.
 
#43
1. That's why it's good to not only read the thread title. The OP quote is more explicit. 2. The goal appears to be to affect discord in American culture, not just "bitch at Rian" so let's not pretend like the effects of this are isolated to his Twitter alone. Other people read those comments and the hate spreads.
Your points are true. It's also a misleading title. You had a lot more characters to work with but left the title misleading and provocative. In terms of fostering discussion, click-bait titles bias responses and discussion in general by encouraging hot takes.

IMO

And, imo, the findings of the paper are interesting enough as is to provoke discussion. For instance, someone brought up how these findings would extend to other hot topic twitter issues. Or would this extend to other platforms?
 
#48
Topic Title: "Last Jedi haters are alt-right trolls and russian bots"
Actual Data: "Twitter users who directly messaged Rian Johnson to troll Last Jedi are mostly alt-right and russian bots."

These are substantially different conclusions.
The narrative that keeps trying to get passed around on this forum that disliking the last jedi means you're sexist and alt right is seriously getting out of hand. Especially when we conflate what's actually happening in the research and what the poster is creating the topic title about. Just disgusting.
 
#50
Your points are true. It's also a misleading title. You had a lot more characters to work with but left the title misleading and provocative. In terms of fostering discussion, click-bait titles bias responses and discussion in general by encouraging hot takes.

IMO

And, imo, the findings of the paper are interesting enough as is to provoke discussion. For instance, someone brought up how these findings would extend to other hot topic twitter issues. Or would this extend to other platforms?
I think considering the Russian social media operations your would see this replicated on FB and Reddit for sure.
 
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