Tinius Digest September 2021

Tinius Digest

Tinius Digest report on changes, trends and developments within the media business at large. These are our key findings from last month.

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Insight September 2021

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Only six percent supports targeted political ads

A report from the Norwegian Media Authority looks into Norwegians perception of targeted political ads.

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Four main findings:

1

Plummeting support

In one year, the proportion of Norwegians supporting the usage of targeted political ads on social media has fallen from 16 to six percent.

2

Age differences

There are clear age differences in attitudes towards targeted political advertising in Norway. Those under 26 are significantly more positive (16% think it’s okay) than older Norwegians (5% think it’s okay).

3

Acceptance depends on the channel

Norwegians are most negative to political advertising via messages (76%), social media (42%) and radio/podcasts (36%). Norwegians are least hostile to political advertising on television (33%) and online newspapers (32%).

4

37 percent follows politicians

37 percent of Norwegians follow political parties or politicians on social media.

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6 out of 10 Norwegians have encountered online fraudsters

The annual report on digital security from Telenor shows the increase in online fraud.

Download the report.

Four main findings:

1

Increasing problem

62 percent of Norwegians have encountered attempts at online fraudsters—an increase of six percent since 2017.

2

Phishing is most common

48 percent say someone has tried to trick them into disclosing private information online (phishing). This is an increase of eight percent from 2017.

3

Hard to protect oneself

60 percent find it challenging to defend themselves and their data against online fraud and digital crime. Nevertheless, 66 percent of Norwegians have confidence that the government is doing enough to protect national interests against cyberattacks.

4

Social media exposed

Norwegians social media credentials seem most exposed: 1 in 10 has experienced theft or misuse of their login information on social networks.

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Internet bullies are just as mean in real life

Why are online discussions about politics experienced as more hostile than offline discussions? A study from Aarhus University, published in the American Political Science Review, debunks common assumptions.

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Three main findings:

1

Trolls will be trolls

Online political hostility reflects the behavior of individuals predisposed to be hostile in all (including offline) contexts.

2

More witnesses

Because their behavior is more likely to be witnessed on public online platforms, these are perceived to induce more hostility.

 

3

Status-driven individuals

The mismatch hypothesis has only limited selection effects. Instead, hostile political discussions result from status-driven individuals drawn to politics and are equally aggressive online and offline.

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White nationalism flourishes on TikTok

TikTok is a popular platform among youths – and those who intend to use online spaces to produce, post and promote hate and extremism. Institute for Strategic Dialogue has analyzed the spread of white nationalism on TikTok.

Download the report.

Three main findings:

1

Wide-spread problem

Based on a sample of 1.030 videos, ISD identified 312 videos promoting white supremacy. 246 of them (24 percent of full selection) included praise, promotion, glorification or positive discussion of figures such as Brenton Tarrant, Adolf Hitler, ISIS, Ratko Mladic or Oswald Mosley.

2

Promotes extremism via profile info

Extremist accounts use their profiles to promote hatred. 33% of the TikTok accounts analyzed in the study feature one or more references to hate or extremism in their profile features [username, profile image, biography], highlighting how hatred is sustained beyond the platform ephemeral video content.

3

8 out of 10 videos not removed

Only 13 percent of the TikTok accounts and only 18,5 percent of the videos found in the study were removed by the end of the study. There were also observed evasion tactics to avoid takedowns, including banned users returning to TikTok with almost-identical usernames.

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Tech is now EU's biggest lobby spending industry

Corporate Europe Observatory and LobbyControl have analyzed the technology industry’s lobby spending in the EU.

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Four main findings:

1

97 million euros

612 technology companies, groups and business associations spend over €97 million (NOK/SEK983m) annually lobbying the EU institutions. This makes tech the biggest lobby sector in the EU by spending ahead of pharma, fossil fuels, finance, or chemicals.

2

Few prominent players

Despite 612 players, just ten companies are responsible for almost a third of the total tech lobby spend: Google (€5,75m), Facebook (€5,55m), Microsoft (€5,25m), Apple (€3,5), Huawei (€3m), Amazon (€2,75m), Intel (€1,75), QUALCOMM (€1,75m), IBM (€1,75m) and Vodafone (€1,75m).

3

20 percent is US-based

Out of all the companies lobbying the EU on digital policy, 20 percent are US-based, though this number is likely even higher. Less than one percent have head offices in China or Hong Kong. This implies Chinese firms have so far not invested in EU lobbying quite as heavily as their US counterparts. 

4

Significant impact

According to the report, these huge lobbying budgets significantly impact EU policy-makers, who find digital lobbyists knocking on their door regularly. More than 140 lobbyists work for the most significant ten digital firms day to day in Brussels and spend more than €32 million on making their voices heard.

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Women are still under-represented in the TV fiction industry

The European Audiovisual Observatory has published a report on women’s representation in European TV fiction between 2015 and 2019.

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Four main findings:

1

Slow growth

Female directors represented 20 percent of active directors of audiovisual fiction episodes and TV films in the EU. This share grew by five percent from 2015 to 2019.

2

Big differences

On the one hand, women accounted for only eight percent of all cinematographers of European TV Films and high-end TV series and only seven percent of all music composers. On the other hand, 41 percent of all active producers and 35 percent of active writers of audiovisual fiction in the EU are women.

3

Actor roles more gender-balanced

Between 2015 and 2019, women accounted for 43% of active actors in a lead role in audiovisual fiction titles in the EU. The share of episodes played by female-driven teams was only 22 percent.

4

More cooperation

Women directors collaborated with other directors more often than their male counterparts—and often in gender-balanced teams. Writers of European TV fiction worked in large groups which were either male-driven or gender-balanced.

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