Fear and loathing on Facebook? Tracking the rise of populism and platformization in viral political Facebook posts
Adopting a longitudinal ‘demand’ perspective to the study of online political campaigning, the present study details developments in supporter engagement on party Facebook Pages during three Swedish elections — 2010, 2014 and 2018. Specifically, the work presented here uncovers the roles of populism and platformization as ways of constructing political messages. Results indicate that over time, viral posts emerge as increasingly crafted based on the ever-changing affordances of the studied platform, evolving from text-based in 2010 to image-based in 2014 and emerging as primarily video-based in the 2018 elections. Implications for political campaigning are discussed.