Home / Fall 2016 / 2016-11-10 / Social media wields powerful influence in politics

Social media wields powerful influence in politics

The Apple CarPlay app automatically brings up a portion of the apps on an iPhone when it is connected to the 2016 Honda Accord's dashboard during a test in Hayward, Calif., on Oct. 23, 2015. (Laura A. Oda/Bay Area News Group/TNS)

Written by Evelyn Dunn, Staff Writer

Social media has brought out a new face for politics, and with this election that will surely go down in the history books. Is it for better or worse?

Technology has taken some huge leaps since Obama was re-elected in 2012, so this year’s election has definitely benefited from new advancements. The run for president would be very different if not for social media boosting campaigns.

We all know how this election had ridiculous moments where the candidates are concerned, all thanks to social media. Almost everything — including the unwanted information — about Trump and Clinton is public knowledge, and the line between which candidate could be worse for the job is pretty blurry.

“Morning in America has now become mourning in America,” said Kathleen Parker of the Washington Post.

The use of social media has become the norm for this generation, so it would only make sense for Hillary and Donald’s teams to advertise their campaigns through it.

Social media brought both benefits and backlash to each candidate throughout their run for president. America got to see every moment of it through posts, commercials and news.

They have produced commercials and advertisements pointing out the other opponent’s faults while boosting their own campaign — not the most sportsman-like strategy, but certainly an effective one.

The media is notorious for uncover things from the past. Social media document anything and everything. Once it’s out there, it is out there, especially for people with a lot of popularity and power.

Whether it is Donald and Hillary verbally attacking each other on Twitter or their teams posting videos on Facebook boasting about their campaigns, none of it would be there if it weren’t for social media and the people taking advantage of it.

We have all heard and seen videos or posts of the things both candidates have done in the past — some of them before they even wanted to run for the presidency.

There is Hillary in one corner with her email scandal and Trump in the other accused of sexual assault; both these things happened years ago, but social media dug it up again as a slap in the face.

Do these things matter? Of course they do; they depict what type of character we might have as president one day. It is because of social media that we now know these crimes, and once it’s out there, it will be forever.

There are things happening now that are just as distracting and being recorded extensively by the media.

There are multiple videos out there that have recorded supporters of both candidates being “booed” or harassed at conventions or speeches. In fact, these incidents have become the highlight of some gatherings.

Once these situations have been posted and shared all over the internet, people almost completely forget what important political issues were brought up during the speech.

Barack Obama even acknowledged these matters should be handled more appropriately in some of his speeches. “Don’t boo; vote,” said the 44th President of the United States.

Without a doubt social media changed politics this election. With all the terrible and shocking things on social media — even outweighing the good things — it’s inevitably killed politics.

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