Social Media and the NZ 2014 Election


This is not a political blog, but it would be foolish to ignore the fact that 2014 is a general election year. In addition it takes place at a time when the use of social media to assist parties in their campaigns is accelerating.

I have found it interesting to look at how the parties are and are not using social media in 2014. As yet I cannot discern from a lay perspective whether any one party possesses the knack, nor is it clear that some of them and/or their adherents have any idea how to get it.

However, I have found this blog site, Social Media & the 2014 General Election run by Matthew Beveridge to be helpful when considering the area.

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3 responses to “Social Media and the NZ 2014 Election

  1. I think politicians — like generals — are in danger of fighting the last war using social media. American politics is a good easel upon which to capture this sea change.

    Take Obama, for example. Love him or loathe him, his social media tactics did work. Recall how Obama won his first election — idiotically simplistic messages like “Hope” and “Change” and nothing particularly complex.

    His next election was won by “says-this-does-that” messages.

    The opposition was always one step behind. Always fighting the last war, when their opponent had moved onto the next.

    This same phenomenon is happening in NZ politics, now. Look at the messages being sent out. Ask yourself “where have I seen these before?” Invariably, the answer will be “in the previous election.”

    Social media moves much quicker than that!

  2. Hi Peter,
    interesting thoughts on Twitter and how the message is being dumbed down into slogans and two-second sound-bites.
    I recently wrote a post which proves your point, though probably I was less generous in my conclusion. David Cunliffe on Facebook had the one-liner, “Labour will always stand up for your right to a tea break”, (for which he had huge support) and “Under the proposed law, even the right to a tea break would have been cut!” a statement which annoyed me so much I did some research – and found it to be untrue. Intentionally? Who knows.
    http://elephanza.blogspot.co.nz/2014/06/tell-it-straight-mr-cunliffe.html
    PS: Just for your interest, I discovered your site on Keeping Stock. I’ll be back 🙂

  3. I personally have little time for twitter, while I can appreciate it’s uses in say the aftermath of the Christchurch earthquake, as a political tool it rapidly degenerates in point scoring oneupmanship.

    Twitter aside, I do feel that the opposition have forgotten how interconnected the world is and how easy it is to confirm or disprove facts. Cunliffe in particular keeps scoring own goals in this regard, His message shifts rapidly and without warning and is very inconsistent, perhaps worst of all, it’s often factually and demonstratively incorrect.

    It becomes very easy to build up a narrative of dishonesty and incompetence in respect of Cunliffe and by association Labour.

    In sharp contrast, honest and openness is a crucial ingredient of brand Key. Policy is broadcast well in advance and Key tries to have accurate facts to hand.

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