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―― 操作変数法を用いた因果効果の推定
辻 大介, 2018 『ソシオロジ』63巻1号(通巻192号), pp.3-20

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In Japan xenophobic discourse has spread on the Internet widely and rapidly since around 2000. Cyber racists have organized hate groups such as Zaitoku-kai, and their activities, held not only online but also offline (e.g. hate demonstrations on the street), which seriously threaten Japanese-Koreans and other ethnic minorities, have been a great social problem up to the present. Some qualitative studies found that the Internet plays the role of a catalyst which connects racists to each other, and activates their xenophobic attitudes and behaviors. However, setting aside such particular hate group activists, does the use of the Internet make people in general more racist? There are no previous quantitative studies based on survey research data to examine a causal relation, not a mere correlation, of Internet use to racist attitudes.

To answer this research question I conducted a web-based questionnaire survey in November 2017, and analyzed the data by a synchronous effects model incorporating the instrumental variables. The results showed that the amount of Internet use has a significantly positive causal effect on the pro-attitude-toward-racism scale (i.e. greater use of the Internet leads to a more racist attitude), while the pro-attitude has no significant causal effect on Internet use.

Interestingly, I also found that the amount of Internet use has a significantly positive causal effect as well as on the contra-attitude-toward-racism scale. The results of some additional analyses suggested that this bi-directional effect of Internet use on the pro/contra-attitudes can be interpreted as a bi-polarization effect brought by selective exposure to information on the Internet. It means that those who have a pro-racist predisposition prefer to access more information favorable to racism, and therefore they are more likely to be affected by such information, while the opposite is true in the case of those who have a contra-racist predisposition.

TSUJI Daisuke, 2018
Does Use of the Internet Make People More Racist?:
A Causal Analysis Based on a Synchronous Effects Model Using the Instrumental Variable Method

Soshioroji, Vol.63-No.1, pp.3-20

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