Identifying network structure, influencers and social mood in digital spheres: A sentiment and content analysis of down syndrome awareness


World Journal on Educational Technology: Current Issues, vol.10, no.1, pp.10-19, 2018 (Scopus) identifier


© 2018 SciencePark Research, Organization & Counseling. All rights reserved.Down syndrome is a sensitive subject and one that requires efforts being made to improve conditions of individuals with Down syndrome across multiple dimensions. Social awareness is one of the important dimensions for the inclusion of individuals with Down syndrome. Online spaces as well as offline spaces are an important part of our daily lives, and these spaces provide numerous opportunities to create, increase and sustain awareness of Down syndrome. From this perspective, this study examines the awareness of Down syndrome in online spaces. With this objective in mind, the research examined 4,168 conversations from 2,430 individuals that were posted in a microblogging service on WDSD. The research findings indicate that the Down syndrome network is distributed in time and space with diverse backgrounds. Key influencers were those who were already associated with Down syndrome. Furthermore, the social mood for Down syndrome was found to be positive.