Exploring Media Framing Effects on Moroccans’ Views and Perceptions of Sub-Saharan Immigrants on Facebook


  • Hicham CHENTOUFI Mohammed V University in Rabat, Morocco
  • Yamina EL KIRAT EL ALLAME Mohammed V University in Rabat, Morocco




In the context of increasing globalization and migration, understanding public attitudes towards immigrants is crucial. This study examines Moroccans' perceptions of sub-Saharan immigrants on Facebook, drawing on 376 comments posted in response to news coverage of migrant break-ins into Moroccan houses on "Hespress." Employing a mixed-methods approach, comments were qualitatively and quantitatively analyzed to explore the factors influencing Moroccans' attitudes toward immigrants. The study mainly addresses three research questions related to (i) how media framing influences Moroccans' attitudes towards sub-Saharan immigrants on Facebook? (ii) What factors shape the negative sentiments expressed towards immigrants in Moroccan social media discourse? (iii) How do gender dynamics impact the expression of negative sentiments towards immigrants among Moroccan Facebook users? Entman (1993), Goffman (1974), and Snow and Benford’s (1988) frameworks are adopted. The findings reveal that media framing significantly shapes negative sentiments toward immigrants and portrays them as transgressors. Moroccan immigration policies are accompanied by expressions of hatred and calls for violence. Gender dynamics further influence the expression of negative sentiments, although criticism of immigration policies is shared across genders. This study contributes to a nuanced understanding of attitudes toward immigration in Morocco, emphasizing the importance of considering media influences and gender-specific distinctions in shaping public perceptions.