Political campaigns have become a lot trickier today with new technologies like the Internet. Like in the case of Howard Dean, a 2004 candidate for the Democratic presidential nomination, there was an overwhelming sense that he was going to win the nomination when, in fact, he was behind the other candidates. Clay Shirky talks about Dean’s downfalls during his campaign in “Exiting Deanspace”. Dean and his team were great at making him seem like he was in the lead the whole time to themselves and the public, but their failure to plan, budget, and get actual votes from the public ended up costing him the campaign. The image Dean was able to create for himself as a forerunner when in fact he was losing is an example of Eli Pariser’s filter bubble that he talks about in The Filter Bubble: What the Internet is Hiding from You.
Pariser says one of the issues with the filter bubble is that those in it, do not even realize they are in it. This was the case with Dean who seemed oblivious to the fact that he was behind in the polls. Dean was able to even have reporters believe that he was in the lead because a majority of the articles talked about him as a definite winner. This in turn made the public believe Dean was also the winner, because that is what they were reading. There was selective exposure going on in this campaign; Dean’s team were so hopeful and oblivious that they were only seeing what they wanted to see which was him as the Democratic presidential candidate.
Do you believe the public would have realized Dean was not doing as well as the press made it seem if they had done more thorough research on statistics and polls or was the filter bubble too strong making it very difficult for anybody to realize he was on the road to failure even with deeper research?