Week 9

We have learned a lot about the history of social media and how everything was created. Last week we learned about the Howard Dean campaign and how it was very successful in putting up numbers using social media but there was no results. Here we see how the Obama campaign is changing the game.

Reading the Slotnick and Gueorguieva articles, we learn about the tools that social media provides. In Slotnick’s article, she talks about YouTube and Myspace. There is a different user demographic for the both of them. And also the fact that a lot these venues of social media cut a lot of cost in advertising money. YouTube also allows candidates to directly speak to audiences in a more convenient setting. MySpace added the social part of networking. It was interesting to read this article because it was written before the 2008 elections with Obama.

In contrast, the Gueorguieva article was written when the 2008 elections were occurring. It compared the way Obama had used social media to the Dean campaign and the other candidates in the race. Gueorguieva pointed out the number of Facebook friends that Obama had compared to the other candidates was almost quadrupled in every instance. We can also see how successful Obama was able to strategically turn these numbers into votes. A reoccurring theme of the prominent differences between tactical and strategy theories is being portrayed here again and in this case, supported.

I agree with both of these articles and their views on how social media is being a huge change in how election campaigns are being approached. I think that this upcoming election is going to have game changing and innovative ways that these candidates use social media. I think with the invention of many different new and influential applications, in particular, location based applications like Foursquare have the potential to revolutionize the way campaigns are conducted yet again

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2 Responses to Week 9

  1. alexilexa says:

    I agree with you in that the location based applications have the potential to revolutionize the way campaigns are conducted. Slotnick examined Obama’s unique and smart strategy of featuring links to two event organization sites, Party Builder and Eventful on his web page. This was revolutionary in extending beyond the virtual space and inviting potential supporters to rally together in the real world to mobilize their support and their money. Obama also included a one-stop shop for any and all Obama’s needs on mybarackobama.com. It “serviced his campaign as it provided a tracking system for supporters and gave them tools at their fingertips to create new networks and bring in additional supporters.” Like you, I think that these strategies will now be adapted by the 2012 candidate nominee online campaigns, and it will be interesting in seeing who will get ahead as a result of these inclusions.

  2. amandakoons says:

    I would also agree that the game is changing in terms of advancing yourself in the political campaigns. We discussed in class how the change in candidates having their own website changed the game because it gave the mass public an unfiltered platform to read about their candidates views and opinions. Now with the Internet, I would argue that social networking sites and blogs is almost like interacting virtually with the candidate. It gives the public an event greater role in political campaigns. It causes me to consider a couple of things, firstly do we think that candidates fully realize the potential of the social networking world? After looking at some of the candidate FB pages in class, it almost seemed like their effort to make a presence online was half-assed (pardon the terminology), which was surprising to me since Barack Obama gave such a great example of how to do it successfully. And secondly, although we live in a democracy, because of the electoral college, sometimes our one vote doesn’t have as much of an impact as we might think in getting our chosen candidates elected. Therefore, do we think citizens realize the potential amount of influence THEY have by participating in these political discussions in the blogs and SNS? If they did, I think we’d see a dramatic increase in citizen participation online!

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