What are the trends in social and digital media that will help shape the 2012 presidential election? What can we learn from grassroots election efforts like Rock the Vote, now in its 20th year, contrasted with the very short history and transformational social media tactics used in recent presidential politics? Is it a natural evolution of activism, is it disruptive? If so - how? Join PBS NewsHour moderator Christina Bellantoni and panelists Mary Katharine Ham (radio host/political commentator); Maria Teresa Kumar (founding executive director, Voto Latino); Craig Newmark (founder craigslist and craigconnects); Heather Smith (president, Rock the Vote); and others to be announced, for a wide-ranging, idea-generating, big-picture discussion of trends past, present and future on how the presidential election may be shaped and transformed by social media services such as Twitter and Facebook to new location based and mobile technologies.
From smear campaigns on Twitter to owning a domain before the opposition does to constituent hangouts on Google+, social media and the web have changed the election process for good. Candidates rely on social media to get their message out on their terms, journalists report and react to the story as it happens, and social platforms help to galvanize public opinion, support volunteers and solicit donations. With viewpoints from journalists, scholars, and campaign practitioners, this panel will reflect on the 2012 presidential campaign and how new media has made its mark. Specifically, the panel will look at which online platforms are performing the best in the 2012 election, the convergence of new and traditional mediums on the campaign trail, and analyze how campaigns are using these tools to promote their issue platforms and candidates, successfully or not.
What emerging media strategies and tools will shape the 2012 campaigns?
In 2008, text messages and branded social networks (MyBO, McCainSpace) changed the face of political campaigning forever. In the 2012 race, presidential candidates and their campaign staff are scrambling to find the next “new thing” to motivate and organize supporters. As rumors swirl that Barack Obama will raise over $1 billion by election day, candidates are avidly seeking ways to engage donors online and on mobile.
A small panel of Washington insiders discuss how new media is shaping the 2012 campaigns and who is using the freshest technology to separate themselves from the pack and make a run for the White House.
9th–13th March 2012