In the article titled the Social Pulpit, Lutz states that in the 2008 campaign, Obama used social media such as You Tube to reach people from all over the United States in order to promote his politics. Morozov, however, talks about how the internet today pushes people away from actual activism and creates slacktivism. After looking at multiple theorists, I believe both are correct depending on the time period; in 2008 Lutz is correct that social media is actually activism, whereas today, Morozov’s theories are correct that social media is pushing citizens away from true activism.
Lutz uses examples from the Obama campaign to show that social media is the way to promote any campaign in today’s world. He tells readers that Obama used the Internet enthusiasm from the Dean campaign and the organization from the McCain campaign to reach campaigning success. Lutz points out that one reason the Obama campaign was so successful was because he executed each of the above points perfectly. Obama created a Dean type forum called change.gov where supporters could blog and bring up important political topics to discuss. Lutz explains how this discussion forum opened up politics to a new group of people who were not involved previously. Obama also used social media to fundraise like the McCain campaign did. The McCain campaign struggled though because it lacked the political discussion. If execution and balancing these two aspects is the key to a successful campaign, then why aren’t the same tactics working as well in the 2012 campaign?
I believe Obama is not as successful currently because of a greater increase in social media. In 2008 Obama used YouTube and other media outlets to get his message out to citizens. Today, with tweets and “likes,” Morozov’s slacktivism seems to be present everywhere. It is this slacktivism that is undermining the campaign strategies that were so successful in 2008.
Do you believe it is this slacktivism that is undermining the old campaign strategies? Or do you believe there is something else causing the slacktivism?