Incidental Exposure, Selective Exposure, and Political Information Sharing: Integrating Online Exposure Patterns and Expression on Social Media

Brian E. Weeks, Daniel S. Lane, Dam Hee Kim, Slgi S. Lee, Nojin Kwak

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

115 Scopus citations


Political information sharing in social media offers citizens opportunities to engage with news and express their political views, but how do different patterns of online political information exposure, including both incidental and selective exposure, affect sharing? Using two-wave panel survey data collected in the United States, we examine the relationship between incidental and selective exposure and their consequent links to political information sharing, across different levels of strength of political party affiliation. Our results demonstrate that incidental exposure to counter-attitudinal information drives stronger partisans to more actively seek out like-minded political content, which subsequently encourages political information sharing on social media. The results highlight the need to consider both types of political information exposure when modeling citizens' political behavior online.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)363-379
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of Computer-Mediated Communication
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 2017


  • Incidental Exposure
  • Information Sharing
  • News
  • Political Expression
  • Selective Exposure
  • Social Media

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Science Applications
  • Computer Networks and Communications

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