Overall, narratives about school shootings vary dramatically in terms of the kinds of topics discussed as well as the civility of the discourse. More importantly, it appears that civility is directly related to the opinion entrepreneurs, who drove the narrative creation on social media and helped spread (in)correct information.
Our work raises some cautionary notes. As the composition of the media landscape continues to evolve, changes in how outlets cover important political issues may also have repercussions for the quality of our ongoing national conversation. Similarly, our findings appear to be in line with the notion that coordinated campaigns pushing misinformation (whether through established news outlets or newly invented ones) can have a surprisingly large impact in this era of online media consumption.