We decided to discover the main arguments of the debate about Social Credit System on Reddit, a popular platform for discussion. The visualization shows how one of the most relevant threads about Social Credit System is structured and what are the main arguments related to the theme. We discovered a strong connection between the arguments mentioned on Reddit and the ones found out in the previous protocols. Since we discovered that in China there is no proper debate around Social Credit System, we chose to focus only on the western world: in addition, there is no Chinese counterpart for Reddit, as there aren’t any social sites designated for discussions on controversial topics, also because of the strong online censorship imposed by the government. At first we analyzed different posts from the first results searching for Social Credit System and we discovered that each post had the same main arguments. Therefore, we chose the most relevant one among the others and also the most replied one. We selected the second result when searching for that query because the first one was off topic. After reading and analyzing each comment, we categorized them based both on what was the comments’ argument and the approach of the users.
Thanks to the analysis of this protocol and the previous ones we are able to get to some conclusions: at first, in the western world SCS topic is strongly debated and there are also some recurring themes around it which are repeated among almost all platforms of discussion. In a specific way, the debate is often related to some cultural references about imagery of dystopian society (for example Black Mirror and Orwellian novel) or about ethic issues like privacy and freedom. The comparative analysis used in the majority of protocols led us to notice that there is a strong difference between western and Chinese perspective. In fact, in China there is almost no debate about Social Credit System because, for Chinese people, this system resembles a good way to reward honesty and loyalty and to punish outlaws and criminals. For them, they’re confident to be scored by the government.
We chose to analyze Reddit, so we searched for Social Credit System on the platform. By ranking the posts by Top, we chose the second one as it was the most relevant and replied one. We extracted the comments that could be seen without opening all the hidden replies and we categorized them based on: the macro argument they were talking about (economics, ethics, habits, politics, pop culture and free time), the specific argument they were addressing (for example Black Mirror or freedom) and the approach used to reply (against, ironic, uncertain, concerned, neutral).
Data Source: Reddit
The dataset collects all the 147 Reddit comments and presents six main items: level, text, points, macro-argument (5), specific-argument (35) and approach (against, ironic, concerned, uncertain, neutral, in favor).