A Field Guide to Online Political Conversations

Political discussion on social media feels more charged than ever. The Walrus and The Samara Centre for Democracy asked Canadians how we can learn to disagree and keep things civil

We often talk about what governments and social-media platforms can do to foster better conversations online. But how can citizens and social-media users themselves help? What can each of us do to make online discourse more civil, empathetic, and conscientious? The Walrus and The Samara Centre for Democracy have teamed up to ask Canadians why our social-media conversations are so charged—and how this hurts our democracy. Here, we share the results from our special survey. Read more from the “Field Guide to Online Political Conversations” at The Samara Centre for Democracy.





The Walrus Staff

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Dear Readers,

For years, experts have raised the alarm about political polarization. It’s been said the left and right can’t talk to each other. Blame the political climate. Blame the rise of tech platforms and social media algorithms. But we don’t talk enough about the difference in the quality of the information that we receive and share.

As more and more media outlets die and as parts of Canada become “news deserts,” there are two types of citizens emerging: those with access to high-quality, fact-based journalism, like the kind you’ll find in The Walrus, and those without it.

One thing all reliable media outlets have in common: it takes time and adequate funding to produce good journalism.

If you like reading The Walrus, we ask that you consider becoming a monthly supporter. Your donation helps us keep The Walrus’s fact-checked online journalism free to all.

Jessica Johnson
Sincerely,
Jessica Johnson
Editor-in-Chief