Hate Speech in Online News: News about HIV/AIDS in Turkey

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Süllü Durul S., Yılmaz E.

Akdeniz İletişim, no.31, pp.643-664, 2019 (Peer-Reviewed Journal)

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Publication Date: 2019
  • Journal Name: Akdeniz İletişim
  • Journal Indexes: TR DİZİN (ULAKBİM)
  • Page Numbers: pp.643-664
  • Anadolu University Affiliated: Yes


Hate speech is based on exclusion and
devaluation of certain groups in society, which represents a systemic
hierarchy. This systemic hierarchy is constructed on the basis of discourse
that represents the dominant ideology and media plays an important role in the
dissemination of this discourse. In this sense, hate speech is a discursive
practice that serves the benefits of the dominant ideology, which is endorsed
through the discourse of media. Especially, news media plays an important role
in the dissemination of hate speech because news is considered as the
representation of real life. This study aims to analyze online health news in
terms of hate speech against HIV/AIDS and understand how HIV positive people
perceive this hate speech. For examining online news, critical discourse
analysis method is adopted; and in-depth interviews are carried out with ten
HIV positive people. Findings of the analysis of in-depth interviews are in
accordance with the findings of critical discourse analysis, as HIV positive people
claim that online news promotes and popularizes prejudices, stigmatization and
discrimination against them and that online news’s content involves
misrepresentations, misinformation, and incorrect use of terminology. Even
though hate speech encompasses all types of expressions that promote,
popularize, defend or justify discriminatory, intimidating, disapproving and
prejudicial attitudes, HIV positive people do not describe this as hate speech,
which points to the fact that hate speech is internalized and justified by its