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Obama's online mobilization

the mobilizing potential of new media in Obama's presidential election campaign

Renske Jongbloed

on 10 March 2011

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Transcript of Obama's online mobilization

Obama's online mobilisation The mobilizing potential of new media in Obama's presidential election campaign collaboration The paper In which ways can new media contribute to the interaction between politician and the electorate?
What are traditional mobilisation techniques, and do new media change these?
How did Obama('s campaign team) use the mobilizing opportunities of new media? Our research questions: Increased opportunities to participate
Lower barriers of participation
Enhanced quality of experience
Reduction of effort and costs to participate
Fading of geographic barriers
Information readily available

Also: Maybe attraction of new participants/voters? New media opportunities for political communication Why electorate uses the internet Unsatisfied with information from traditional media
Practical information
Easy to contribute (financial, personal)
Possibility to interact and share (fora, discussions)
Get statistical information, polls, etc Negative assumptions about new media influences: Relatively small numbers invloved
Profile of users not that different Positive assumptions Potential to engage young people
Indication that it might attract new voters Traditional mobilization Targeting most receptive
voter/registrant lists
Grassroots (person-on-person) Versus New media consequence:
Cost reduction
Easier to reach large audience

Problem: spamming 1.
Interaction new media & politics 2.
Mobilisation techniques and
new media influence 3.
Obama's presidential election campaign Limits to influence Cost transfer from institution to individual
Traditional media reach more peopl

But: new media might help mobilize opinions Why do election candidates have online strategists? costs/benefits of new media
Effectivity (virally spreading of message)
Personal attatchment to candidates Online strategy
Obama and
Chris Hughes (facebook) Webdesign (Branding)
Social Networking Sites (SNS)
Merging old with new
User specific access But: was this the reason for his success? Barack Obama won an unprecedented 66 percent of the under-30 vote.
Ronald Reagan set the previous record with 59 percent in 1984. And In politics, the new media may have become a message. But in governing, the message is still the message. Conclusions: Why was new media and Obama a good combination?
New media influencial with Obama's target group (youth)
Use of new media fitted with message of breaking with the old
Use of new media fitted with personal message: "I am one of you" So: succes of use new media only if it fits with target group and message
It might improve effectivity of political activity
Impact of new media still going on - use is still evolving Task division Used tools Literature search Google chat
Google wave
Zotero All three: research question and topic brainstorm
Petra: New Media & politics, new media & mobilisation
Sylwia: The Obama case study
Renske: literature search, Integration 2 parts, introduction + conclusion, presentation sEURch (integrated search tool of Erasmus university)
Google Scholar
Factiva (database)
Communication & mass media complete (database)
Full transcript