The use of Social Media is on the rise. Politicians can now connect to their constituents using social media such as Twitter and Facebook. The use of these technologies reaches out to a new generation of voters. But how can social media influence the voters?
Barack Obama used social media, such as Twitter and Facebook, to earn the voters’ trust. His website was easy to navigate to get information, was constantly updated, and contained links to videos and presentations from Obama. The Obama campaign used social media effectively to attract the youth vote. Even typing his name into an online search program, brought Obama’s website to the top of the list. (DWSmg, 2008).
The use of Facebook and Twitter is credited with the overthrow of the Egyptian Government in 2011. Protest organisers were using Social Media to rally their supporters. In an unsuccessful attempt to stop the uprising, the Egyptian government tried to disrupt Facebook, Twitter, and blackberry services (Aljazeera, 2011).
Did social media assist in the Queensland 2012 State Election? It would appear not! A social media expert predicted that social media would be Anna Bligh’s secret weapon (Caldwell, 2012). The use of it may have saved her seat, but certainly not the Labor Party.
Caldwell, Felicty. (2012). “Twitter End to Contest.” MX Newspaper, March 21.
Aljazeera. (2012). Timeline: Egypt’s Revolution, Accessed 23 March 2012, http://www.aljazeera.com/news/middleeast/2011/01/201112515334871490.html
DWSmg. (2008). Barack Obama’s Ultimate Guide to Marketing: How he Used Internet and Social Media to Become President-Elect. Accessed 23 March 2012, http://dwsmg.com/barack-obama-marketing-guide.html.