Victor’s Orbán’s Missing Affinity Towards Alternative Media on Facebook

Györgyi Rétfalvi

Abstract: The paper finds no liked pages by Viktor Orbán, then the Prime Minister of Hungary, on his Facebook page. Further content analysis is needed, which may help unravel the deeper connections with alternative news sites. This finding begs for alternative explanations. Was it due to a lack of interest or a need? The capture of most news media in Hungary may suggest that this might have been a plausible answer. Or was it due to a lack of time? We could identify a specific form of allocution when Orbán’s FB page became a central information source for news outlets. Be that as it may, this negative finding is important for the political communication theory on social media. Populist or right-wing leaders may not publicly indicate interest or affinity to any alternative media, especially when a few alternative media may oppose their policies. Moreover, a lack of interest in public liking of other sources or institutions close to a politician may indirectly suggest contempt for them – ultimately suggesting anti-plurality and authoritarian tendencies. Finally, although Hungary may be seen as a laboratory of alternative politics, this is certainly not true for using alternative or advanced approaches to communication on social media.