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UW Election Eye 2012

Campaign 2012 through the eyes of UW faculty and students

Topic: social media

You are viewing the most recent posts on this topic.

November 6, 2012 at 7:00 AM

Flash poll: what impact does social media have on the millennial generation?

Seattle — As I filled out my voter’s ballot for the 2012 presidential election, I couldn’t help but think of two words: Gangnam Style.

Ranked number two on the Billboard Hot 100 charts is the new hit from South Korean rapper, PSY. The viral YouTube video, “Gangnam Style,” has people dancing all over the globe, including a parody of presidential candidate, Mitt Romney:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yTCRwi71_ns&feature=player_embedded

With nearly 7 million views on YouTube, “Gangnam Style” has more views than the total amount of likes on the vice presidential candidates’  Facebook pages, combined (for both Joe Biden and Paul Ryan).

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Comments | More in Culture, National | Topics: flash poll, social media, Young voters

November 4, 2012 at 7:00 AM

Is social media “turning off” young voters to political discourse?

President Obama introduces himself on Reddit, where he opened up an “Ask Me Anything” forum for questions. (Screenshot by Kristine Kim / UW Election)

Young voters are more engaged with the election than ever before, thanks to social media. But are today’s conversations as deep as they were in the past?

Seattle — You’ve heard the trends. College students who didn’t even have time to tune in to any of the three presidential debates know that their friends are talking politics when the subjects of Big Bird or binder —  particularly those full of women —  come up. It’s the product of the social-media engine, where a South Korean pop star can go viral in the United States and an “Ask Me Anything” open forum by the president causes Reddit participants to chant, in the form of internet comments, “One of us! One of us!”

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Comments | More in Culture, National | Topics: discourse, Election 2012, social media

November 3, 2012 at 7:00 PM

LOLcats and the election: how memes have taken over the news

As election day looms, “zinger” retweets and reblogs catapult political memes into the public eye.

On Twitter memes often appear in the form of hashtags.  (Image courtesy of AdWeek.com / UW Election Eye)

SEATTLE — Internet meme (n.): “a catchy phrase or idea associated with an image, which often becomes viral online.”

During the presidential debates, my Twitter feed was aflutter with homemade memes and my Tumblr flooded with political commentary in that oh-so familiar form of white blocky text over photos.

Memes catapulted to fame in 2006 with the rise of the LOLcat and the kitties of I Can Haz Cheezburger.

The first memes I remember seeing were of the “I can haz” variety, but plenty has changed in the past few years, and now this internet art form has become a key part of the 2012 presidential election.

This became especially apparent during the months leading up to the first of the 2012 presidential debates. As October neared, Internet users of all ages were churning out Obama and Romney memes at full-speed.

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Comments | More in Culture, National | Topics: discourse, Election 2012, memes

October 17, 2012 at 7:10 AM

What’s in a “Like”?: Social Media and the Election

We hear so much about “the power of social media.” But just how much are we  influencing others when we post or tweet to those already in our audiences?  Social Media and Politics – “Like”? “Unlike”?Image from Drexel NOW website SEATTLE – You care about the future of your country.  In this closely fought election and…

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Comments | More in National | Topics: Barack Obama, Binders full of women, Election 2012

September 11, 2012 at 6:45 AM

Obama team winning the digital campaign, but grassroots want more

The Democratic National Convention last week took on social media and garnered a flood of tweets. But one organizer says the Obama campaign has lost sight of its digital roots of engaging people in local participation.

The “I’m There” Flickr Project for the Democratic National Convention (Photo by Amber Cortes/ UW Election Eye)

CHARLOTTE — The Democratic National Convention was hailed by its leaders as the “most open and accessible convention in history — reaching more Americans than ever before through a diverse set of social media platforms.”

True, absolutely true. But not good enough for some.

The DNC could be found last week on a dizzying array of social media platforms — flickr, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Google +, Foursquare, Pinterest, and Instagram. A DNC mobile app helped delegates and media navigate the convention and broader Charlotte (though there was no platform for BlackBerry, so I couldn’t use it). There was also a website with an interactive delegate map and a livestream of the speeches every night.

In terms of social media presence, the Obama campaign is winning the race. Consider that the Republican National Convention in Tampa — where the RNC headquartered a social media “Command Center” — was the focus of over 4 million tweets during the convention — whereas the DNC was the focus of more than 5 million tweets by the second day.

But is the Obama campaign truly engaging their base through digital media? Hmmm. Interesting question.

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Comments | More in National | Topics: Barack Obama, Democratic National Convention, digital media

August 16, 2012 at 11:18 PM

In digital campaign for president, Obama far more active than Romney

Social media networks such as Facebook and Twitter and Youtube channels became part of the political communication mix during the 2008 Presidential election. How do the Obama and Romney campaigns compare as we approach November 2012?

If an election outcome rested on how well a campaign does with Twitter, then President Barack Obama’s camp would be focused not on November 2012 but January 2013. Not only is the Obama campaign out-tweeting the Mitt Romney team but the Obama tweets are being shared at a rate of 17-to-1 compared with Romney’s.

Obama leads Romney

Project for Excellence in Journalism, August 2012

The Pew Project for Excellence in Journalism analyzed the digital activity of the two campaigns over a two-week period in June. The report shows that there is a “digital gap” between the presumed Republican and Democratic candidates for president, just as there was between Obama and John McCain in 2008.

The report reviews candidate activity across a mature set of digital platforms: Facebook, Twitter and YouTube plus the campaign websites. In June, the Obama campaign had a presence on nine platforms: Facebook, Flickr, Google+, Instagram, Pinterest, Spotify, Twitter (@BarackObama plus five others), Tumblr and YouTube. The Romney campaign had public accounts on five: Facebook, Flickr, Google+, Twitter and YouTube; it has subsequently added Tumblr and Spotify, according to the report.

Obama established a broad digital presence in 2008 and has maintained it throughout his presidency. Thus it is not surprising that his digital support dwarfs Romney’s.

But it is not even close, in ways that are intriguing.

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Comments | More in National | Topics: Barack Obama, Facebook, Mitt Romney