Observers of democratic polities decry a seeming increase in social and political polarization. This article outlines the conditions under which Internet-based news exposure can facilitate polarization. Analyses of data from a nationally representative United States panel study reveal that frequency of news consumption over the Internet can widen disagreements between Democrats and Republicans over a wide range of social and political issues. The results reveal few signs of a similar Internet news exposure effect for disagreement linked to race and income. These findings point to some possible mechanisms of, and limitations to, processes driving social and political polarization.
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