The dawn of #social media has not only changed the way of connecting and communicating with different people of different geography but also the political scenario. It has revolutionised the whole political beat. The political communication on the social media is vibrantly increasing with every passing day. It is changing the nature of communication because it is a tool that is being used to mobilize users in new ways. It has also surpassed and flicked over the mainstream media by becoming an online news agency. Moreover news on the social media is taking the lead over the print and the electronic media. Social media is itself a trending network.
Social media has become an interactive medium between masses and the political profiles. Users are able to connect directly to politicians and campaign managers and engage in political activities in new ways. Even politician have become very much active on social media in order to attract the youth who are very prone to the trending social media sites. It has become a medium to check out their progress and attraction of audience towards them. Politicians or even the political parties have their own ‘social media team’ who governs and monitor the campaigns, promotional events, rallies and propaganda. Traditionally, if you wanted to meet a politician or candidate, you would have to attend a live event. Which most of us cannot? With modern technology, it’s now possible to attend virtual events where you can participate in live streaming events and interact with politicians and candidates. Politicians and the political parties are using the social media as a medium to reach out to the target audience to promote and advertise their campaigns and their events.
Besides the online Journalism, it provides a new platform to the new form of media and that is Phono Journalism, where journalists use their smart phones to carry out their work. As we are aware of going LIVE on facebook, where users drop their comments and perspectives also participate in the discussion and share their ideas and notions about the particular topic or a discussion. Further It has become a source for the print and electronic media, as the leading and the controversial stories of social media sites mostly ‘Tweets’ become the lead for mainstream media.
One of the hidden powers of social media is ‘controversial trap’. This is especially powerful when it comes to controversial topics, including politics. It is the tool that pulls out the truth and the reality regarding any political party. Even a single controversial word goes viral weather it is PM Narendra Modi’s statement regarding ‘shamshaan’ or ‘kabristan’ or a statement by the student Gurmehar Kaur regarding the ‘war’.
The 2008 presidential election was the first election in which candidates utilized the Internet and social media as a tool for their campaigns Then President-elect Barack Obama was the first to use the Internet to organize supporters, advertise, and communicate with individuals in a way that had been impossible in previous elections. Obama utilized sites like YouTube to advertise through videos. The videos posted on YouTube by Obama’s were viewed for 14.5 million hours. Also in 2012 election more candidates were utilizing a wider array of social media platforms. Politicians were now on social networking sites like Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and other new social media tools. Even Arvind Kejriwal is prominent as far as social media is concern; his strategies had a positive impact on 2013 and 2015 Delhi legislative elections, which attracted the vibrant youth towards him. Social media is the image of all trending stories weather it is the recent elections or the controversies. It flicks from one user to another which makes it trend throughout.
There are several negative effects to social media which receive criticism, for example regarding privacy issues and fake news etc. It also has negative social effects on users. Angry or emotional conversations can lead to real-world interactions outside of the Internet, which can get users into dangerous situations. Some users have experienced threats of violence online and have feared these threats manifesting themselves offline. Studies also show that social media have negative effects on peoples’ self-esteem and self-worth. Nevertheless, political parties can not only win the hearts of people by promotional events and campaigns on social media or by interacting with users on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, or by any other social media site. Instead they have to work by days and toil by nights in order to prove themselves worth. Moreover many fake news stories cannot work out until a complete research is not carried out; hence everything trending on the social media cannot be trustworthy. Besides this, there are new proposals for internet voting, which could lead to more people participating in elections. This could make social media even more influential and more trending…..