Mediated and networked politics
Social media and the Internet as
mediators between politicians and voters
Presentation hel...
Problems

•Low and declining voter turnout
•Little trust in politicians and politics
100

90

80

70

60

50

40

30

20

10

0
1979

1981

1984

1987

1989

1994

1995

1996

1999

2004

BE

DK

DE

IE

FR
...
Solutions?
ONLINE CAMPAIGNING
History of campaigning
Pre-modern campaigns

Tools

Print media, rallies,
meetings, foot soldiers

Mode / style

Labor-intensive,
interpersonal, ...
Pre-modern campaigns

Modern campaigns

Print media, rallies,

Broadcast television news,

meetings, foot soldiers

news a...
Pre-modern campaigns

Modern campaigns

Professional
campaigns

Tools

Broadcast television news, Internet, direct mail

m...
Party sites compared across countries
Pippa Norris (2001)
Web feature analysis
•Information function
•Communication functi...
• Kluver, Foot, Schneider & Jankowski (2007)
• Web sphere analysis
- Political parties
- Labour unions
- NGOs

• European ...
• Advanced and extended replication of web feature analysis
Candidate websites
European Parliament elections 2009
Sample: 17 countries
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•

Austria
Belgium
Cyprus
Czech R...
Methodology

• All party and campaign websites
• Random sampling of candidates with websites, but . . .
• Always including...
Four distinct dimensions of website features

• Informing
• Personal Reputation
• Connecting & Sharing
• Audio-visualisati...
1,0
0,9
0,8
0,7
0,6
0,5
0,4
0,3
0,2
0,1
0,0

Informing

Personal reputation

Connecting & Sharing

Audio-visualizations
ALDE

EPP

Information

GUE / NGL

Personal Reputation

S&D

GREENS / EFA

Connecting & Sharing

ECR

Audio-visualizations...
Macrolevel explanation?

Political systems variables
•Fractionalization
•Proportionalism
•Voting system
Personalisation

• Personalisation
- Politician representing the party

• Personalisation
- Politician as a person
70%

60%

50%

40%

30%

20%

10%

0%
THREE DIMENSIONS OF PERSONALIZATION ON CANDIDATE
WEBSITES
•Professional
•Home and Family
•Personal preferences
1,6

1,4
1,2
1,0
0,8

0,6
0,4
0,2
0,0

professional

home and family

personal preferences
ECR

EPP

S&D

Personal preferences

ALDE

GREENS / EFA

Personal favorites

EFD

Home & Family

GUE / NGL
NEW ERA OF CAMPAIGNING?
Two new and related developments
• Online political networking
• Personalisation
Political capital online

• Social networking sites
• Microblogging
Social networking sites
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•

Facebook
Twitter
Bebo
Hyves
Youtube
Flickr
Picassa
And many many more
Premodern campaigns

Modern campaigns

Professional
campaigns

Tools

Broadcast television news, Internet, direct mail

me...
Pre-modern campaigns

Modern campaigns

Professional

Personal campaigns

campaigns
Tools

Broadcast television news, Inte...
TWITTER
AS A CAMPAIGN TOOL
The Dutch parliament elections of 2010

Significantly larger implementation of Twitter
as a campaign instrument
But …

What does it do?
Level the playing field?
equalisation hypothesis
or
Nothing changes
normalisation hypothesis
TWITTER ADOPTION RATE IN
THE NETHERLANDS 2010
Twitter

Several indicators
Number of people following the candidate (followers)
Number of people followed by candidate (f...
100%
90%
80%
70%
60%
50%
40%
30%
20%
10%
0%
EXPLAINING TWITTER
ADOPTION
Subscribing to Twitter

• Party age is unrelated to Twitter adoption
• Ideology is unrelated to Twitter adoption
• Candida...
Subscribing to Twitter

• Male and female candidates adopt Twitter as likely
• Younger candidates adopt Twitter more likel...
The number of tweets

• The longer a candidate is subscribed to Twitter, the more
Tweets s/he sends
The number of followers

• The older the party is, the more followers the candidate has
• The higher ranked the candidate,...
The number of following

• The lower ranked candidates follow more other people on
Twitter
• Candidates from parties who l...
The number of reciprocated relations
(follower and following)

• Candidates of parties that have leadership uncertainties
...
Trends running up to Election Day

MICRO-BLOGGING ACTIVITIES
Research questions

1. To what degree do candidates and the public engage in
public discussions on the Web?
2. To what ext...
• All candidates
• All tweets in 40 days prior to Election Day

• Inner circle
All tweets of Twitter users that follow can...
Findings

• All messages: n=4,451,128 sent out by the
candidates and the inner circle of the candidates
• nearly half of a...
CDA
PvdA
SP
VVD
PVV
GL
CU
D66

PvdD
SGP
NN
TON
MenS
HNL
Partij1
Piraten

09-jun-2010

08-jun-2010

07-jun-2010

06-jun-201...
CDA
pvda
SP
VVD
PVV
GL
CU
D66
PvdD
SGP
NN
TON
MenS
HN
P1
Piraten

09-jun-2010

08-jun-2010

07-jun-2010

06-jun-2010

05-j...
50

Number of replies by politicians during last
40 days of campaign

45

40

35

30

25

20

15

10

5

0

CDA

pvda

SP
...
Candidates’ political blogging sphere

COMMUNICATION NETWORKS
• Only few replies
• Little reciprocity in general
• Reciprocity decreases when activity increases
• Level playing field?
Conclusion

• Social media’s success kills the social part of social
media
• Successfull candidates turn social media into...
So . . .

… back to square one?
Thank you for your attention

Maurice Vergeer
Web: www.mauricevergeer.nl
Email: m.vergeer@maw.ru.nl
Twitter: @mauriceverge...
Sources
• Hermans, L. & Vergeer, M. (forthcoming). Personalisation in e-campaigning
Cross national comparison of personali...
• Vergeer, M., & Hermans, L. Campaigning on Twitter. Twitter as a campaign tool
in the general elections 2010 in the Nethe...
Web campaigning and European Parliament elections 2011. Presentation held at the European People's Party, Belgrade, Octobe...
Web campaigning and European Parliament elections 2011. Presentation held at the European People's Party, Belgrade, Octobe...
Web campaigning and European Parliament elections 2011. Presentation held at the European People's Party, Belgrade, Octobe...
Web campaigning and European Parliament elections 2011. Presentation held at the European People's Party, Belgrade, Octobe...
Web campaigning and European Parliament elections 2011. Presentation held at the European People's Party, Belgrade, Octobe...
Web campaigning and European Parliament elections 2011. Presentation held at the European People's Party, Belgrade, Octobe...
Web campaigning and European Parliament elections 2011. Presentation held at the European People's Party, Belgrade, Octobe...
Web campaigning and European Parliament elections 2011. Presentation held at the European People's Party, Belgrade, Octobe...
Web campaigning and European Parliament elections 2011. Presentation held at the European People's Party, Belgrade, Octobe...
Web campaigning and European Parliament elections 2011. Presentation held at the European People's Party, Belgrade, Octobe...
Web campaigning and European Parliament elections 2011. Presentation held at the European People's Party, Belgrade, Octobe...
Web campaigning and European Parliament elections 2011. Presentation held at the European People's Party, Belgrade, Octobe...
Web campaigning and European Parliament elections 2011. Presentation held at the European People's Party, Belgrade, Octobe...
Web campaigning and European Parliament elections 2011. Presentation held at the European People's Party, Belgrade, Octobe...
Web campaigning and European Parliament elections 2011. Presentation held at the European People's Party, Belgrade, Octobe...
Web campaigning and European Parliament elections 2011. Presentation held at the European People's Party, Belgrade, Octobe...
Web campaigning and European Parliament elections 2011. Presentation held at the European People's Party, Belgrade, Octobe...
Web campaigning and European Parliament elections 2011. Presentation held at the European People's Party, Belgrade, Octobe...
Web campaigning and European Parliament elections 2011. Presentation held at the European People's Party, Belgrade, Octobe...
Web campaigning and European Parliament elections 2011. Presentation held at the European People's Party, Belgrade, Octobe...
Web campaigning and European Parliament elections 2011. Presentation held at the European People's Party, Belgrade, Octobe...
Web campaigning and European Parliament elections 2011. Presentation held at the European People's Party, Belgrade, Octobe...
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Web campaigning and European Parliament elections 2011. Presentation held at the European People's Party, Belgrade, October 2011

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Presentation held at the European People's Party, Belgrade, October 2011 on web campaigning in the EP elections of 2011

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Web campaigning and European Parliament elections 2011. Presentation held at the European People's Party, Belgrade, October 2011

  1. 1. Mediated and networked politics Social media and the Internet as mediators between politicians and voters Presentation held at the EPP campaign managers meeting 20-21 October 2011 Dr. Maurice Vergeer Department of communication
  2. 2. Problems •Low and declining voter turnout •Little trust in politicians and politics
  3. 3. 100 90 80 70 60 50 40 30 20 10 0 1979 1981 1984 1987 1989 1994 1995 1996 1999 2004 BE DK DE IE FR IT LU NL UK EL ES PT SE FI CZ EE CY LT LV HU MT PL SI SK BG RO 2007 AT 2009
  4. 4. Solutions?
  5. 5. ONLINE CAMPAIGNING
  6. 6. History of campaigning
  7. 7. Pre-modern campaigns Tools Print media, rallies, meetings, foot soldiers Mode / style Labor-intensive, interpersonal, amateur Orientation to Mobilizing, voters = loyal voter partisans Internal power Local-centric distribution
  8. 8. Pre-modern campaigns Modern campaigns Print media, rallies, Broadcast television news, meetings, foot soldiers news advertisements, polls Labor-intensive, Capital-intensive, interpersonal, amateur mediated, indirect Orientation to Mobilizing, voters = loyal Converting and mobilizing, voter partisans voters = loyal partisans Tools Mode / style and floating Internal power distribution Local-centric National-centric
  9. 9. Pre-modern campaigns Modern campaigns Professional campaigns Tools Broadcast television news, Internet, direct mail meetings, foot soldiers news advertisements, polls Labor-intensive, Capital-intensive, Capital-intensive, interpersonal, amateur Mode / style Print media, rallies, mediated, indirect marketed, targeted, continuous Orientation to Mobilizing, voters = loyal Converting and mobilizing, Interactive, voters = voter partisans voters = loyal partisans consumers and floating Internal power distribution Local-centric National-centric Local-/national centric, bifurcation
  10. 10. Party sites compared across countries Pippa Norris (2001) Web feature analysis •Information function •Communication function Developmental explanations • Technological development • Human development • Political development
  11. 11. • Kluver, Foot, Schneider & Jankowski (2007) • Web sphere analysis - Political parties - Labour unions - NGOs • European focus • Party sites were best equipped
  12. 12. • Advanced and extended replication of web feature analysis
  13. 13. Candidate websites European Parliament elections 2009 Sample: 17 countries • • • • • • • • Austria Belgium Cyprus Czech Republic Estonia France Germany Greece • • • • • • • • • Hungary Ireland The Netherlands Poland Portugal Romania Slovakia Sweden United Kingdom
  14. 14. Methodology • All party and campaign websites • Random sampling of candidates with websites, but . . . • Always including the top three candidates per party • 288 party and campaign websites • 738 candidate websites • All websites were archived digitally • Elaborate coding scheme • Coding by local experts • Advanced analyses - factor analysis, hierarchical linear models
  15. 15. Four distinct dimensions of website features • Informing • Personal Reputation • Connecting & Sharing • Audio-visualisations
  16. 16. 1,0 0,9 0,8 0,7 0,6 0,5 0,4 0,3 0,2 0,1 0,0 Informing Personal reputation Connecting & Sharing Audio-visualizations
  17. 17. ALDE EPP Information GUE / NGL Personal Reputation S&D GREENS / EFA Connecting & Sharing ECR Audio-visualizations EFD
  18. 18. Macrolevel explanation? Political systems variables •Fractionalization •Proportionalism •Voting system
  19. 19. Personalisation • Personalisation - Politician representing the party • Personalisation - Politician as a person
  20. 20. 70% 60% 50% 40% 30% 20% 10% 0%
  21. 21. THREE DIMENSIONS OF PERSONALIZATION ON CANDIDATE WEBSITES •Professional •Home and Family •Personal preferences
  22. 22. 1,6 1,4 1,2 1,0 0,8 0,6 0,4 0,2 0,0 professional home and family personal preferences
  23. 23. ECR EPP S&D Personal preferences ALDE GREENS / EFA Personal favorites EFD Home & Family GUE / NGL
  24. 24. NEW ERA OF CAMPAIGNING?
  25. 25. Two new and related developments • Online political networking • Personalisation
  26. 26. Political capital online • Social networking sites • Microblogging
  27. 27. Social networking sites • • • • • • • • Facebook Twitter Bebo Hyves Youtube Flickr Picassa And many many more
  28. 28. Premodern campaigns Modern campaigns Professional campaigns Tools Broadcast television news, Internet, direct mail meetings, foot soldiers news advertisements, polls Labor-intensive, Capital-intensive, Capital-intensive, interpersonal, amateur Mode / style Print media, rallies, mediated, indirect marketed, targeted, continuous Orientation to Mobilizing, voters = loyal Converting and mobilizing, Interactive, voters = voter partisans voters = loyal partisans consumers and floating Internal power distribution Local-centric National-centric Local-/national centric, bifurcation
  29. 29. Pre-modern campaigns Modern campaigns Professional Personal campaigns campaigns Tools Broadcast television news, Internet, direct mail Weblogs, micro-blogs, meetings, foot soldiers news advertisements, polls social networking sites Labor-intensive, Capital-intensive, Capital-intensive, Low-cost, computer- interpersonal, amateur mediated, indirect marketed, targeted, mediated, networked, continuous Mode / style Print media, rallies, personalized, amateur Orientation to Mobilizing, voters = loyal Converting and mobilizing, Interactive, voters = Hyper interactive, voters voter partisans voters = loyal partisans consumers = interested, personal Local-/national centric, Local-/national-centric, bifurcation individual and and floating Internal power distribution Local-centric National-centric networked
  30. 30. TWITTER AS A CAMPAIGN TOOL
  31. 31. The Dutch parliament elections of 2010 Significantly larger implementation of Twitter as a campaign instrument
  32. 32. But … What does it do? Level the playing field? equalisation hypothesis or Nothing changes normalisation hypothesis
  33. 33. TWITTER ADOPTION RATE IN THE NETHERLANDS 2010
  34. 34. Twitter Several indicators Number of people following the candidate (followers) Number of people followed by candidate (following) Number of Tweets (number of original messages) Number of replies
  35. 35. 100% 90% 80% 70% 60% 50% 40% 30% 20% 10% 0%
  36. 36. EXPLAINING TWITTER ADOPTION
  37. 37. Subscribing to Twitter • Party age is unrelated to Twitter adoption • Ideology is unrelated to Twitter adoption • Candidate rank on election list is related (higher ranked -> more adoption) • External shock is related: loss of seats if prior elections -> more adoption) • Internal shock (leadership uncertainty) is unrelated
  38. 38. Subscribing to Twitter • Male and female candidates adopt Twitter as likely • Younger candidates adopt Twitter more likely
  39. 39. The number of tweets • The longer a candidate is subscribed to Twitter, the more Tweets s/he sends
  40. 40. The number of followers • The older the party is, the more followers the candidate has • The higher ranked the candidate, the more followers s/he has • The more seats the party won in the last elections, the more followers the candidate has • Candidates from parties with leadership uncertainties have more followers • Candidates who are subscribed longer, have more followers
  41. 41. The number of following • The lower ranked candidates follow more other people on Twitter • Candidates from parties who lost in prior elections follow more others on Twitter • Candidates from parties with leadership uncertainty follow less others on Twitter • Longtime subscribers to Twitter follow more others on Twitter
  42. 42. The number of reciprocated relations (follower and following) • Candidates of parties that have leadership uncertainties have less reciprocated relations on Twitter • Longtime subscribers have more reciprocated relations in Twitter
  43. 43. Trends running up to Election Day MICRO-BLOGGING ACTIVITIES
  44. 44. Research questions 1. To what degree do candidates and the public engage in public discussions on the Web? 2. To what extent is do parties engage in online communications? 3. Do discussions take place within the boundaries of the party (i.e. many small ideological public spheres consisting of homogeneous networks) or are they crossing party boundaries?
  45. 45. • All candidates • All tweets in 40 days prior to Election Day • Inner circle All tweets of Twitter users that follow candidates • Outer circle Twitter users , not following candidates, but who can be (re)tweeted to
  46. 46. Findings • All messages: n=4,451,128 sent out by the candidates and the inner circle of the candidates • nearly half of all messages is undirected, i.e. sent to no one in particular. • About a third is sent to people on Twitter not following any candidates (i.e. outer circle). • Little over a sixth of the messages are sent to people following at least one candidate,
  47. 47. CDA PvdA SP VVD PVV GL CU D66 PvdD SGP NN TON MenS HNL Partij1 Piraten 09-jun-2010 08-jun-2010 07-jun-2010 06-jun-2010 05-jun-2010 04-jun-2010 03-jun-2010 02-jun-2010 01-jun-2010 31-mei-2010 30-mei-2010 29-mei-2010 28-mei-2010 27-mei-2010 26-mei-2010 25-mei-2010 24-mei-2010 23-mei-2010 22-mei-2010 21-mei-2010 20-mei-2010 19-mei-2010 18-mei-2010 17-mei-2010 16-mei-2010 15-mei-2010 14-mei-2010 13-mei-2010 12-mei-2010 11-mei-2010 10-mei-2010 09-mei-2010 08-mei-2010 07-mei-2010 06-mei-2010 05-mei-2010 04-mei-2010 03-mei-2010 02-mei-2010 01-mei-2010 Number of tweets by politicians during last 40 days of campaign 1000 900 800 700 600 500 400 300 200 100 0
  48. 48. CDA pvda SP VVD PVV GL CU D66 PvdD SGP NN TON MenS HN P1 Piraten 09-jun-2010 08-jun-2010 07-jun-2010 06-jun-2010 05-jun-2010 04-jun-2010 03-jun-2010 02-jun-2010 01-jun-2010 31-mei-2010 30-mei-2010 29-mei-2010 28-mei-2010 27-mei-2010 26-mei-2010 25-mei-2010 24-mei-2010 23-mei-2010 22-mei-2010 21-mei-2010 20-mei-2010 19-mei-2010 18-mei-2010 17-mei-2010 16-mei-2010 15-mei-2010 14-mei-2010 13-mei-2010 12-mei-2010 11-mei-2010 10-mei-2010 09-mei-2010 08-mei-2010 07-mei-2010 06-mei-2010 05-mei-2010 04-mei-2010 03-mei-2010 02-mei-2010 01-mei-2010 120 Number of tweets sent to politicians during last 40 days of campaign 100 80 60 40 20 0
  49. 49. 50 Number of replies by politicians during last 40 days of campaign 45 40 35 30 25 20 15 10 5 0 CDA pvda SP VVD PVV GL CU D66 PvdD SGP NN TON MenS HN P1 Piraten
  50. 50. Candidates’ political blogging sphere COMMUNICATION NETWORKS
  51. 51. • Only few replies • Little reciprocity in general • Reciprocity decreases when activity increases • Level playing field?
  52. 52. Conclusion • Social media’s success kills the social part of social media • Successfull candidates turn social media into mass media
  53. 53. So . . . … back to square one?
  54. 54. Thank you for your attention Maurice Vergeer Web: www.mauricevergeer.nl Email: m.vergeer@maw.ru.nl Twitter: @mauricevergeer
  55. 55. Sources • Hermans, L. & Vergeer, M. (forthcoming). Personalisation in e-campaigning Cross national comparison of personalisation strategies used on candidate websites in EP-elections 2009. New media & Society. • Vergeer, M. Hermans, L. & Sams, S. (2011). Is the voter only a tweet away? Micro-blogging during the 2009 European parliament Election campaign in the Netherlands, First Monday, 16(8). • Vergeer, M., & Hermans, L. (2011). New public deliberations. Twitter as a new campaign tool for public discussions. Paper presented at World Association of Public Opinion Research (Wapor). • Vergeer, M., Hermans, L. & Sams, S. (in press). Online social networks and micro-blogging in political campaigning: The exploration of a new campaign tool and a new campaign style. Party Politics. • Vergeer, M., Hermans, L., & Cunha, C. (forthcoming). Political parties, candidates, and Web campaigning in the 2009 European Parliament elections. A decade of cross-national comparative website-feature analysis • Vergeer, M., Lim, Y.S., & Park, H.W. (2011). Mediated relations: new methods to study online social capital. Asian Journal of Communication, October 2011 issue
  56. 56. • Vergeer, M., & Hermans, L. Campaigning on Twitter. Twitter as a campaign tool in the general elections 2010 in the Netherlands. (submitted for publication) • Kluver R, Jankowski NW, Foot K and Schneider SM (eds.) (2007) The Internet and National Elections. A Comparative Study of Web Campaigning: London: Routledge. • Norris P (2001) Digital Divide? Civic Engagement, Information Poverty and the Internet Worldwide. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. • Van Os R., Jankowski NW and Vergeer M (2007). Political communication about Europe on the Internet during the 2004 European Parliament election campaign in nine EU member states. European Societies 9(5): 755-775.
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