The Return of Post-Truth Politics The case of Geert Wilders' fake news post

“You can sway a thousand men by appealing to their prejudices quicker than you can convince one man by logic.” ― Robert A. Heinlein

Research Question

How do people make sense of negative campaigning between candidates and negotiate the fake news stories in the case of Geert Wilders?

Do the interpretations of the negative campaigning differ dependent upon the platform it has been spread to and presented on?

Translation: D66 wants to split off Amsterdam when election results fall short. Pechtold demonstrates with Hamas-terrorists. Is this the next step?


Rise of actualising citizenship among young people

More circulation of fake news

Intertextuality of news stories

Theoretical Framework

Negative Campaigning

Fake news & Visuals
Negative campaigning: Battling

Impact on the audience: Individual

effectivity & Political trust
Inefficacy, alienation and cynicism
Emotions: Contempt

Impact on the audience: Citizen-citizen interaction



Sample Tweet Geert Wilders (240 responses), Facebook Alexander Pechtold (78 responses), Geenstijl (96 responses), Youtube Kasper Jansen (all 54 responses) and Dumpert (all 52 responses). Focus on the first responses, because they give the intuitive response to the tweets.


Type of Responses

The two poles that are created are: emotional/informative and satirical/argumentative. Persuasion and conflict refer to the most common motives with which people write these type of posts.

Typologies of fake news respondents

Differences between platforms?

Dumpert differed from other platforms in that less of a divide was created between Pechtold and Wilders. Here the only response was found that indicated initial belief in the realism of the picture.


We have arrived in the age of Post-truth politics, but we also see a lot of resistance against fake news. Citizens themselves function in different ways as gatekeepers of news and opinion.


The accompanying text

Created By
Joia de Jong

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