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Detta är en Master-uppsats från KTH/Skolan för elektroteknik och datavetenskap (EECS)

Sammanfattning: The information technology revolution has completely changed the world economy. This industry that has revolutionized many aspects of social life, created an incredible amount of jobs, and generated an enormous amount of wealth, has been growing exponentially fast since the beginning of this century. Billions of people all over the world tap into the various services and products that have sprung from this information technology revolution. While these products and services have undisputedly enabled incredible features that previous generations could only have dreamt of, it might be time to take a step back and analyze the various aspects of some of these products and services in terms of their societal value and business models. Many of the social media platforms that exist today promise a free access to content and information, and the world has grown so accustomed to this, that the dynamics behind this promise of free access are often overlooked. Data from users is being collected on social media platforms and sold to interested parties like advertisers, who in turn can create customized and targeted ads that will be displayed on these same social media platforms. This is the simple exchange that fuels the advertisement-based business models of many of these platforms. Awareness and understanding around the workings of this business model is growing, but it seems interesting to illustrate a better picture of what implications these business models fueled by data have on our society. Specifically, this research aimed at answering the question: What are the implications of the advertisement-based business model of YouTube in relation to the 2016 presidential elections of the United States? Through an extensive literature review, as well as a case study analysis, this research reported various implications of the business model of YouTube that were discussed both in light of their relevance to the specific political event mentioned in the research question, as well as in light of larger overarching institutions like democracy.

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