The Advantages and Disadvantages of Social Media in Politics today

by: Randy Harris 

Hilary Clinton has gained a huge following on Twitter and has used the social media platform to help get this younger generation to the polls in hopes of becoming the next United States president.

Georgia Southern graduate student Lindsay Gribble says the reach and potential audience is a great asset of social media during the close elections that have ensued.

“Hilary posted a lot of tweets in complete Spanish as an example of reaching out to a specific demographic via social media” Gribble says. “The disadvantages point at Donald Trump and how he has used it, making comments against reporters and fellow candidates and receiving public criticism as a result.”

The timeliness of receiving information is no doubt one of the great advantages of social media today, with power houses such as Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram leading the way in which most young people receive all of their news. GS senior film student Cassandra Holmes believes that television networks could be in trouble due to how newer age groups lean to the platforms to get their information.

“They’re more interested and trusting of social media than they are of Fox News and CNN, so having the candidates on social media connects them to the younger aged college students and under,” Holmes says.

 A Democratic politician in New York, Anthony Weiner, showed the true downside of what social media can do to one’s image as he was involved in a 2011 scandal of him sexting inappropriate pictures via Twitter to an adult film star he was following. There’s no doubt you can help yourself and your personal brand with social media, but the extreme lows that can come as a consequence to your brand just as easily makes you wonder whether or not pressing send is worth it.

Georgia Southern University

Communication Arts Department

PO Box 8091

Statesboro, GA 30460

(912) 478-5138

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