Social media is projected to play a very key role in the up coming elections of 2016. Both candidates Hillary Clinton and Ted Cruz announced that they will be running in the next election on twitter, and this sparked millions of Facebook posts and interactions between social media users related to that topic. Dan Ackerman, an expert shown on CBS News, said social media announcements from politicians keeps them from looking “old fashioned” before the elections even begin. It also helps to spark young voter’s interests, and provide them with information about the candidates where they most often look. In today’s digital age it is important for presidential candidates to portray themselves and their beliefs on social media because that is where they are most viewed, and shared amongst the voter population.
If you took a look at your Facebook feed on Monday April 13th, you would most-likely see a wide variety of posts about the three candidates that have announced they will be running for president. A popular article posted by MRCTV entitled “10 scandals involving Hillary Clinton You May Have Forgotten” reminded people of Hillary’s past mistakes, which she will probably have to address during her campaign. Articles like these can spark discussion amongst social media users, which are both a good and a bad thing. On one side these articles and posts make information about each candidate more readily available especially to the Millennials who have the opportunity to make a huge impact on the next election. The down side to social media projecting ideas at us while we scroll down our news feed is that opinion sometimes out weighs fact, and ignorance seems to be present and uninformed debates begin.
Ted Cruz has been tweeting away the past couple days declaring his promises to America and the disadvantages of electing Hillary Clinton as our next president. He recently posted a picture attacking the Obama administration of its lack of initiative and its policies that seem not to work. This campaign strategy allows candidates to post at their leisure as well as save money on advertising.
Marco Rubio announced his campaign on Monday also, but he chose the traditional route of announcing his decision live from Miami. The irony or Rubio avoiding social media to make his announcement is that his campaign is based around the idea of moving forward with 21st century ideas and straying away from “yesterday.” If he wants to avoid being old fashioned and appeal to a younger audience, Rubio should probably consider moving his front to either Facebook or Twitter.
As we move closer to the 2016 elections, the role of social media will become more and more prevalent. At the end of the presidential race we may be able to determine whether the use of social media aided the candidates in votes, or if it negatively affected their campaign.