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Comunicar Journal 74: Education for digital citizenship: Algorithms, automation and communication (Vol. 31 - 2023)

Social media influence on young people and children: Analysis on Instagram, Twitter and YouTube


Raquel Lozano-Blasco

Marta Mira-Aladrén

Mercedes Gil-Lamata


Social networking sites are a new ecosystem of social relations in which adolescents follow public figures or influencers: instagrammers, tweeters and youtubers. Their behaviour in the posts they publish become a trend and a model for the new generations. In order to explore these behaviours and their consequences, it is useful to study the behaviour of the 10 instagramers, 10 tweeters and 10 youtubers with the largest number of followers in the world. A mixed method was employed, combining: social media analysis (SNA) methodology executed by monitoring Twitter, Instagram and YouTube accounts and their publications (300 posts with the highest number of likes). The FanapageKarma tool was used to capture data by applying data mining techniques. Subsequently, sentiment analysis was performed using Meaning Cloud software, determining sentiment polarity analysis quantitatively. Finally, a semantic analysis of the content was performed using Nvivo. The results of multi-regression and sentiment’s analysis show clear differences between social networking sites. Twitter is a space for critical analysis of information and social movements, especially climate change. In this space adolescents defend their values and ideology. Instagram is a showcase for fashion and beauty, where brands support an idealised and desirable lifestyle. YouTube is a space for entertainment and comedy. It concludes that despite their differences there is one univocal feature, the effort of influencers to capture audiences and establish parasocial relationships.


Adolescence, youth, polarity, Twitter, YouTube, Instagram

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