By Jessie Cross*
With two state elections looming, you may want to know how social media is impacting your vote. Not only does it influence how you vote, it provides a platform for about one-third of us to spill our voting beans on.
With social media dominating today’s society, it’s no wonder politicians are working hard to create their online personas.
Research shows around 30 per cent of [American] voters have been persuaded to vote for main parties via internet posts – while almost one in five registered voters [in America] has revealed who they have voted for on a social networking site such as Facebook or Twitter.
The degree to which some people can impact others’ decision making and choices has sky rocketed. So with the New South Wales and Queensland elections looming, swinging voters are bound to be influenced when it finally comes to voting for a party. The question is, to what extent?
According to Alison Ledgerwood, an assistant professor of psychology at UC Davis, it is extremely common for people to unintentionally be impacted upon when it comes to decision making. This can be seen through the 61million person experiment on Facebook, led by James Fowler from the University of California.
In 2010, Fowler began a randomised controlled test to see how much influence was carried through social media. Messages were delivered to 61 million Facebook users during the US congressional election. From the results it could be seen that the messages directly impacted upon millions of peoples voting choices during the elections. However, the messages not only influenced the recipients, they also impacted friends or users, and friends of friends.
The influence wielded through social networking is staggering. It suggests through social interaction, either via social media or face to face conversations, people are greatly influenced by those around them. So no matter the size, this voting season any gesture may persuade us to choose one way or another.
*Jessie Cross is undertaking her Higher School Certificate (HSC). She is currently (January 2015) on work experience with Wells Haslem.
By Benjamin Haslem
Interesting piece by Kayla Matthews on PR Daily about how the PR industry is portrayed in popular culture.
This depiction may feed into journalists' perception of the industry, though obviously the media's own regular interaction with PR professionals colours its view.
Many of my former journalist colleagues think we spend most of our days writing media releases and phoning journalists. Why wouldn't they; that forms the bulk of their experience interfacing with PR professionals.
While this may be true if you're an in-house media manager or politician's press secretary, the craft of PR is far more complicated than that.
Communicating with stakeholders (any person who has a stake in an issue, event, policy etc that you are dealing with) involves numerous channels, be it via the media; through social media; newsletters; e-mail; snail mail; websites; conferences; community meetings; focus groups; personal phone calls; F2F calls, so on and so forth.
Before even communicating, it is necessary to analyse each stakeholder and stakeholder group:
Once you've figured that out, you can start thinking about the actual act of communicating.
Not exactly how it's portrayed in popular culture.
But then the portrayal of the media suffers from the same fate.
Based on my 10 years working in three newspaper newsrooms, I'd nominate just two instances I've seen where a newspaper has been accurately portrayed in popular culture:
Here's Kayla Matthews list, which she expands on in her post:
1. Is Social Media Stifling Political Debate?