Semiotic analysis of the political web site. The case of the web sites of PSC and CiU

Óliver Pérez Latorre

Abstract

Digital interfaces have an implicit discourse about the author/institution behind them, the usermodel and the relationships between them. However, the semiotic approach on the study of web sites has not reached a desirable level of development at the moment. This paper is an attempt to contribute to this task, through a model of semiotic-discursive analysis of political parties web sites. The model has been conceived to study the construction of the public image of the political party, its ideal “world” and its implicit electorate through the design of the web site. The research is built upon the Semiotic Analysis of Discourse and, specifically, the Digital Interface Semiotics of C. Scolari (2004, 2008). Some elements of analysis have been added to the latter, such as certain particularities related to the political web sites, aspects of web 2.0 and “community building” and a typology of user-model built upon the Semiotics of Marketing and Advertising. Finally the model is tested in a case study on the webs of the Catalan parties Partit dels Socialistes de Catalunya (PSC) and Convergència i Unió (CiU).

Keywords

web; Semiotics; discourse; Politics; PSC; CiU

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