At increasing scale, house races to political races are using social media platforms to promulgate ideas, opinions, and messages to call-up voters. For political parties, social media offer a way to circumvent conventional media and have direct contact with the electorate.
But are they really using social tools as a correlation with citizens to give them opportunities to express and participate? Or do they make use of it only to inform and promote their means?
The Revolution will be Tweeted, rather than broadcast
In October 2010, Naheed Nenshi became first ever Muslim who was elected the mayor of Calgary, Alberta. Nenshi used other social media tools, like Twitter including iPhone app, emphasizing on how valuable these tools are in modern electoral campaigns. As Nenshi said in his interview with The Calgary Herald,
|“The most important thing about social media isn’t to use it as a new way to bombard people with press releases, but to “further the conversation.”
“We’re using the same tools as everyone else,” says the candidate. “It’s how we’re using them and the message we’re getting out that’s very different.
“We use social media to really engage with people in detail, to actually talk to them.
“Where Ald. McIver seems to use these things as news release tools, for instance, I regularly answer people’s questions and further the conversation.”
“At first I thought who in the world would want to download a little app so they could have me in their pockets at all the time? It’s ridiculous. But hundreds of people did.”
The Daily Beast Election Oracle an online opinion setup which thoroughly surveyed 40,000 websites including Twitter and public social feeds to measure the commenting on candidates in the U.S. elections were positive, negative, neutral or mixed. It predicted 36 out of 37 Senate races and 29 out of 30 Governors’ races and nearly 98% of the House races. By counting the number of followers a candidate has on social networks, for example, is seemingly a pretty good predictor if they’ll do well at the ballot box or not.
Facebook is swiftly becoming a social voting platform; Facebook’s political team said “candidates with more Facebook fans than their opponents won 74% of House races and 81% of Senate races”. More than 12 million electoral clicked the “I Voted” button on Facebook double that in 2008.
Why is it all interesting? Well, social media turns out be really social, it appears to be quite different more than prior Internet methods of communication, it represents the opinion of the local people using it. It is, even better, democratic.
In simple words, social media is a battlefield of hearts and minds as the rest of the world. Perhaps it is easy to reach citizen than knocking out on the door or making rallies. It is simple as this, create a Facebook page or tweet!
For those who are unfamiliar with the term Astroturfing, it is the opposite of grassroots. The concept of Astroturfing in politics is to appoint some political operators to hype a fake movement if the support of ordinary people is scarce for them, or they didn’t bother to give time to it, so they falsify you make it look like they’ve got grassroots support. This term sprung up in the mid 1980s it’s become popular activity by marketers, political operators and governments. Astroturfing, in short, allows a politician to pretend a lot more popular than he really is by paying folk to say how great he is.
Panagiotis Takis Metaxas and Eni Mustafaraj studied the local senate race and inspect those 185,000 Twitter messages of two competing candidates and exposed that there was plenty of astroturfing going on, where political operators were creating fake accounts and repeating each other’s messages, to show condole with their likely candidate, in the hope of their messages goes the mainstream.
Researchers are motivating Twitter to recuperate their spam catching tools to stop this problem; subsequent figures from Twitter reflect that the percentage of unwanted messages on the service is about 1%. But the bigger moral is this: social media is an unprecedented aperture of, the populace; an opportunity from salesmen to political operators to manipulate what they think.
No related posts.