Niki Cheong

I am Lecturer in Digital Culture and Society at King's College London. My research interest sits at the intersection of media, politics and digital culture/internet studies. I completed my PhD at the University of Nottingham in 2020, where I investigated cybertroopers and the online manipulation of political information in Malaysia.

Previously, I spent about a decade in journalism, including six years at Malaysia's largest English daily, The Star. As editor of its digital platform R.AGE, I spearheaded digital innovations in journalism and led the team to winning international awards.

My column The Bangsar Boy, featuring socio-cultural commentary about Malaysia, ran for almost 11 years, and in 2017, was published as a book by MPH Publishing titled Growing Up In KL: 10 Years of The Bangsar Boy.

What I'm up to


For my PhD thesis - Cybertroopers and the online manipulation of political communication: The Barisan Nasional years - I am the recipient of the 2021 Best Dissertation Award by the Association of Internet Researchers.

Journal Article

My latest co-authored journal article - and 11-country comparative media study of the newspaper coverage of the 2016 Paralympic Games - has been published in Disability and Society. Click here to read the article.


Currently, I am a co-investigator on a research project with the University of Huddersfield investigating Jeremy Corbyn and Labour Party supporters with regards to the 2019 UK General Election. This article written by Professor Cornel Sandvoss, the lead investigator, offers a preliminary take on our research.

Journal Article

My journal article has been published (open access) in Social Media + Society. (Co-authored with Amelia Johns, May 2019) Feeling the Chill: Bersih 2.0, State Censorship, and “Networked Affect” on Malaysian Social Media 2012–2018. Click here to read the article.


I am currently working on a UNESCO-funded research project alongside Dr. Amelia Johns and Dr. Paul Byron (UTS), and Mr. Hendri Yulius (Indonesia) mapping and reviewing online resources for young LGBTI+ youth and young key populations in the Asia-Pacific region.

Book Chapter

My book chapter - Malaysia: Disinformation as a response to the ‘opposition playground’ - has been published in From Grassroots Activism to Disinformation: Social Media in Southeast Asia, edited by Aim Sinpeng and Ross Tapsell and published by ISEAS Publishing, Singapore.


In 2019, colleagues and I started work on the project Decoding the Weaponisation of Popular Culture on Whatsapp in Singapore and Malaysia project, funded by the Facebook Integrity Foundational Research Award.


In 2017, to commemorate a decade of my column The Bangsar Boy, a book titled Growing Up in KL: 10 years of The Bangsar Boy was published by MPH Publishing. The book features a collection of my past articles, a couple of original pieces as well as commentary from a host of friends and colleagues responding to my work.