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. His doctoral thesis was awarded Best Dissertation in 2021 by the Association of Internet Researchers.

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.

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.


The report from a UNESCO/UNDP-funded research project I was part of mapping and reviewing online resources for young LGBTI+ youth and young key populations in the Asia-Pacific region has recently been published.

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.