Ideological groups use the Internet to deliver their messages unhindered by the constraints of traditional media. We examined how ideological groups promote their worldview through their websites. Using the elaboration likelihood model (ELM), this research used trained coders to examine the websites of nonideological groups (n = 37), nonviolent ideological groups (n = 36), and violent ideological groups (n = 32) for credibility, persuasion processing cues, and interactivity factors. Results of this study found that the websites of violent ideological groups use more fear appeals, were less interactive, and were the least credible of the 3 groups. All 3 groups used more central cues than peripheral suggesting they focused on evidence for their arguments rather than emotion.
- Group Dynamics
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Computer Science Applications
- Computer Networks and Communications