Coming into the office this morning and settling in with my morning cuppa, we started talking about what to post this week. The obvious choice was of course the much debated EU referendum, and the explosive fall out on social media on Friday.
I’m sure like me; leading up to the vote you saw many posts on Facebook. In my experience it was mainly from the Leave campaign prior to the 23rd June, but by Friday supporters of all camps came out in force. The Remain camp was devastated by the decision, and the Leave camp felt inclined to defend their decision to leave. It all became very emotive and it was clear the decision to leave the EU divided the nation.
How did Social media help the political campaigns?
It seems that creating a social media strategy for your political campaign has become vital. Whilst the campaign website will get some traffic, the daily traffic on Facebook and Twitter is a far better way to connect with the voters. And what’s more, it’s a low cost alternative to advertising and TV campaigns!
Politicians can create Facebook posts easily, reacting to any news and reaching a large number of people quickly. Readers can share on Facebook and retweet, helping the campaigners to spread their message in a very efficient way.
Not only can the politicians reach you on social media, but it’s very common to see your friends and family’s political views, which can influence someone’s vote too.
I spoke to many people prior to the vote, and to be honest, most people felt ill-informed and unsure what the pros and cons were for either side of the campaign. The general feeling that perhaps we shouldn’t have been the ones making such a huge decision became apparent.
With Facebook and Twitter being a familiar platform to people, filled with articles and viewpoints from both campaigns, and with families and friends posting their political views, it’s easy to believe that it may have steered many people’s vote. Some may say it was the main tool for becoming ‘informed’ on the EU referendum.
So, what’s next?
So, as I said, it’s very clear via social media that the result has divided the nation. The consequences of the result to Leave the EU are yet to be clear. However the drop in the £, the resignation of David Cameron, Obama stating they will still have a special relationship with the UK, European countries saying they still want to trade with the UK and Scotland considering a referendum to split from the UK, are to name a few of the big stories so far…
Today, Facebook is littered with talk of a 2nd referendum. Remain voters keen to take another crack at it, and the leave voters saying, ‘accept the result and let’s move on’.
One thing is for certain, we all need to pull together now! Whichever way we voted, we need to respect each other’s right to vote and make the best of the final decision.
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