Voting Advice Applications as tools for researching and influencing voters: agenda setting and framing in European VAAs
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Voting Advice Applications are getting more and more popular throughout Europe and a lot of research prove that they have effects both on turnout and decisions of the electorate. This paper brings up the issue of possible agenda setting and framing effects which occur during the process of statements choice and construction in four European VAAs. Its aim is to check whether the statements are well-balanced or whether they suggest users a certain ideology, which is vital because if such an ideological bias is present in the Voting Advice Applications, it may influence the voters’ political decisions. The research also checks whether the statements focus on the European levels of elections or include also internal political conflicts as well as what the main topics covered by the VAAs are. The outcomes prove that the bias in the medium of Voting Advice Applications is noteworthy, especially when it comes to pro-/anti-European Union dimension. The research also proves that there are a lot of statements which did not focus on the European level of the election as well as shows a map of dominant topics present in all European VAAs.
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