[English Corner]美国总统选举中的王牌 ---CCTV
楼主#更多 发布于：2016-11-10 17:52
Millions of people in the US and around the world were probably refreshing their Facebook, Twitter and other social media accounts on the subway, in their office or on the road on Wednesday, eager to find out the result of a historic US presidential election.
With candidates trying to appeal directly to potential voters, social media had an overwhelming impact in this campaign.
Republican candidate and now president-elect Donald Trump, with over 13 million followers on Twitter and 12.6 million on Facebook, arguably made the best use of this new means of communication, reacting quickly to events, shooting off tweets even in the middle of the night, and engaging in a battle of words with opponents and critics.
In a clear sign of the importance his campaign attached to social media, Trump even had a social media director on his team. His Democratic rival Hillary Clinton also kept in touch regularly with her 10.6 million followers on Twitter and 8.5 million on Facebook.
“This election cycle is the first I've seen (where) candidates realize social media is their direct pipeline into mainstream media coverage and to voters,” Patrick Ruffini, a Republican political strategist and founder of digital media firm Engage, told the San Francisco Chronicle earlier in the campaign.
While candidates in 2012 sent out maybe one short statement per day on social media, this time around they were using it to interact with voters and with each other, to voice opinions and even announce policies.
And as supporters – and even critics – “liked” or shared their posts, they were able to reach an even wider audience.
“It’s a global conversation at this point where eight years ago it really wasn’t. Now everybody uses it and in some cases as a primary method of communication,” Frank Speiser, co-founder of SocialFlow, a social media optimization platform, told the Voice of America.
Some 124 million people around the world reportedly followed the second presidential debate on Youtube on October 9, far exceeding the 63 million TV viewers.
Over 17 million people also sent tweets and 19 million netizens engaged in election-related posts on Facebook that night, China’s Xinhua News Agency reported.
In all, over one billion tweets related to the US election were sent out between August 2015 and Election Day on November 8, Twitter also said in a statement.
But beyond making the candidates more accessible, critics have warned this new tool has contributed to insulating people from other opinions and confirming their prejudices.
A study by the Pew Research Center showed a majority of adults in the US – 62 percent – now get their news from social media.
But factors like Facebook’s newsfeed algorithm, which tailors what articles a person sees based on news and pages they have “liked” in the past, have created a so-called “echo chamber,” where people are only exposed to similar opinions and not opposing arguments.
Also, the very nature of social media has meant that punchy or shocking posts get more attention than more substantial – but maybe boring – ones.
Social media has “played a role in creating a kind of scandal-driven, as opposed to issue-driven, campaign," according to Todd Grossman, CEO of Talkwalker Americas, a company that analyses social media data.
“Topics such as Trump's attitude towards women, Trump's tax returns and Clinton's emails have tended to dominate discussion as opposed to actual policy issues," Grossman was quoted by NPR as saying.
In any case, harnessing the power of social media seems to have paid off with Trump, a political newcomer, securing a shock win on Wednesday over his more experienced rival.