Stance and Engagement in Participants' Response to the News of Russian War in Ukraine in Facebook Discussion
Keywords:Comments, News items, , Facebook Participants, , Russia- Ukraine war, Stance and Engagement
The 2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine has continued for more than a year and has had a number of detrimental effects on both nations. The invasion has sparked a significant amount of discussions and arguments on social media. This study focuses on how Facebook users take diverse positions on the Russia-Ukraine war through their comments on war related news items on Facebook. 619 purposively selected readers’ comments on news items posted on four conventional news media Facebook walls constituted the data for the study. Guided by stance and engagement theory on interaction, the readers’ comments by participants were subjected to discourse analysis. Online users' opinions on the war reveal a variety of attitudes and judgment of the presidents of Russia and Ukraine. While some applaud the president of Ukraine for his valiant actions, others view him as a US puppet and consider his determination to keep the war going as detrimental to his citizens. The Russian president is in the same boat. Some believe he is "Hitler reincarnated," while others just regard him as a strong leader. Participants in the discourse used a variety of stances and engagement strategies to persuade other readers and express hope that the war will not turn out badly for either country.
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