Media Evaluation in Presidential Campaign

Published: 2018-06-27 20:30:23
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The Role of Media in Presidential Election

Media played a key role during last year presidential election. Both the Republican candidate, President Donald Trump and the Democrats candidate Hillary Clinton used both traditional and new media while communication to their electorates. Some of the traditional media platforms the candidates used were radio, newspapers, magazines and televisions Farrar-(Myers & Vaughn, 2015).  On the other hand, the presidential candidates used new media such as Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, websites to communicate with the electorate. As compared the other presidential elections, the two leading candidates preferred new media than the traditional media. 

Though Hillary Clinton used traditional media, for instance, newspapers and television and radio, she preferred new media For instance, there were newspapers that supported her candidature, for example, The Houston Chronicle and New York times, which clearly stated that it will support her candidature because she is intellect and experienced. In addition, major television channels such as CNN run adverts that supported her candidature. Hillary also used radio in her last days to election, for instance she did eight interviews in week, for example she was interviewed by Hot 105.1 a Miami a based radio. However, Clinton preferred modern forms of communication than traditional ones. One of the factors that made Hillary Clinton use new media is because that she has spent decades in the public life (Foran, 2016).  As a result, most of the traditional journalist knows her past life.  In addition, the traditional journalist has a perception that Hillary has a perception of hating the traditional media due to various reasons. At first, Clinton accuses traditional media of subjecting women politician to double standards according to the journalists, for instance, they are biased against them. Also, Hillary ignores reporters’ questions, whereby in some cases some reporters’ questions about her personal life. As a result, Hillary preferred new media platforms. Through new media, Hillary was able to spread information to millions of supports whereby, a survey conducted by Forbes found that 24% of adults in the United States received presidential campaign through new media platforms (Myers & Vaughn, 2015). 

Hillary Clinton also preferred new media because it is economical and user-friendly as compared to traditional means. Though Hillary campaign fund was well financed as compared to Trump’s funds, strategists of Hillary campaign team advised her that she should focus more on social media platforms which are inexpensive. Also, the new media was user-friendly to her supporters. Social media information can be accessed through smartphones, whereby more than 60% of Americans have smartphones. In addition, it is easier to use the smartphone to access candidate’s campaign information (Jean, 2014).

Donald Trump vs Hillary Clinton

President Trump who was the main competitor for Hillary Clinton preferred new media as compared to traditional media. At first, Trump did not have a good relationship with traditional media outlets, for instance, newspapers, radio and television. Trump, had the feeling that traditional media was biased, for instance, he called them corrupt and disgusted. In addition, during a campaign at Arizona, Trump claimed that if traditional media was not biased against in he can beat Clinton by 20% (Mayes, 2016). In addition, some of the media outlets such as Houston and USA Today directly supported Hillary Clinton. As a result, President Trump as had the perception that new media was best suited for his campaigns.

President Trump was also active on social media platforms during presidential campaign due to various reasons. At first, the president was able to hold virtual rallies using social, media, for example the Twitter. In this case, Trump could pass out information to his supporters to during any time of the day. The president was able to speak his mind during the campaign period through there was controversy about his message, for instance, when he was calling Hillary crooked through his Twitter account. Though political analysts had the perception that Trump popularity will decrease due to his social media comments that was not the case because he emerged the winner during the November general election (Lee & Tan, 2016).

The democratization of information was another reason that made the two presidential candidates to prefer new media platform rather the traditional ones. Through social media platforms such as Twitter, Facebook and Instagram, the two candidates could share out information to all Americans despite their party affiliations. For instance, President Trump could interact with his supporters in social media whereby some will asks questions and he will respond to them. Also, his supporters were able to comment on his posts regarding several matters, for instance, the United States and the Mexico wall controversy. Also, through the use of the website, the two candidates could display information whereby interested people could obtain information concerning the two before deciding on which candidate they will vote. The two candidates also had displayed their manifestos on their websites (Lee & Tan, 2016).

Best Presidential Candidate for Americans Women

The candidates preferred new media because it was easy to turn digital followers into voters. The two candidates boasted a large number of digital followers, for instance, President Trump had over 12.9 twitter followers as compared to Hilary Clinton over 10.2 million twitter followers (Schmidt, Shelley & Bardes, 2017). Trump who is very active on Twitter gained political supporters through the Twitter, for instance, he could articulate some of the ideas affecting the majority whites, which made him a favorable candidate for them. On the other hand, Hillary Clinton who enjoyed support from women followers in her Twitter account turned them to be her supporters. For instance, Clinton was able to explain challenges facing American women such as sexual harassment in working places and domestic violence. As a result, Clinton emerged as the best presidential candidate for Americans women.

The new media played a key role in providing behind the scene information about their campaigns. There was information the two candidates that they could reveal on traditional media platforms, for instance, Trump called Hillary crooked on social media platforms because he could not reveal such information on traditional media outlets. In addition, Trump attacked Muslims and Hispanics on social media, because his campaign was based on that the problems Americans are facing are due to the immigrants of Muslims and Hispanic to America, thus why after raising to power, his first agenda was to ban immigrants from countries dominated by Muslims. Also, Hillary, who most of the political analysts saw her as feminist campaigned about issues affecting female on social media to avoid direct attack by journalists of traditional media (Schmidt, Shelley & Bardes, 2017). 

To sum it up, during last year presidential elections, the two leading proofed that new media platforms of communication were effective as compared to traditional media. At first, Clinton preferred new media because she feared being questioned about her past because she had been on public limelight for long. Secondly, new media proofed to be economical than traditional means, for instance, to campaign on social media is free. On the other hand, Trump preferred new media because he considered that traditional media was hostile to him. Also, the two candidates preferred new media because they could hold virtual rallies anytime of the day. New media platforms also contributed to the democratization of information, for instance, they could engage their supporters through online platforms. As a result, they were able to turn their digital followers into voters. Lastly, they were able to share their behind the scene campaign information through the new media platforms.

 

Reference

Farrar-Myers, V. A., & Vaughn, J. S. (2015). Controlling the message: New media in American political campaigns.

Foran, C. (2016). Clinton's End-Run Around the Press. The Antlantic, (05), 66. Retrieved from https://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2016/08/hillary-clinton-media-press-conferences/495965/

Jean, S.B. (2014). Social Media in Politics: Case Studies on the Political Power of Social Media.

Lee, B., & Tan, R. (2016). Media Communication in a Changing World. SIM University.. Retrieved 18 March 2017

Mayes, S. A, (2016). US PRESIDENTIAL CAMPAIGN: Political communication and practice. (2017). S.l.: PALGRAVE MACMILLAN.

Schmidt, S. W., Shelley, M. C., & Bardes, B. A. (2017). American government and politics today. Cham: Springer

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