Socialmedia has become a major platform for election campaigns in thecurrent time. Twitter, Facebook and Google are the three main socialmedia outlets which have emerged as key players in general electionsthroughout the world.
Thispaper analyzes the use of social media in Brazil presidentialelection in 2014. The serving President Dilma Rousseff, who is alsothe initial female president in Brazil is campaigning for re-electionwith the Workers Party. Her major opponent is Marina Silva of theBrazilian Socialist Party. The re-election will take place on 26October, 2014. This is after the failure of the presidentialcandidates to receive over 50 percent of the votes during the generalelections which were conducted on 5 October, 2014.
Bothcandidates use various media platforms to do their campaigns. Reportsindicate that President Rousseff has more Twitter followers ascompared to her opponent on the other hand Silva has more Facebooklikes and fans as compared to Rousseff (The Economist NewspaperLimited, 2014). President Rousseff started using a Facebook accountin 2013, the same time when her Twitter account was reactivated byher team. The account has been inactive since the general electionsheld on 2010 which she became the president. Other social mediaplatforms used by Rousseff include Vine and Instagram. Silva too hasfound solace on social media, especially Facebook and Twitter,considering that Rousseff has dominated on traditional media such astelevision. Both candidates use social media to break their news andspread their message to their followers.
Theuse of social media by political hopefuls has been driven by twofactors: the use of social media by most Brazilians and the majoritygetting online. In 2010, 6 million Brazilians were users of Facebookas compared to 83 million in October 2014. Cyberspace is a keybattleground for the general election (Glickhouse, 2014).
Therapid boost in political engagement on social media has modifiedelections and is anticipated to change future elections. It hashelped in enticing younger generation into polls besides providing anunlimited platform of daily air time.
Glickhouse,R. (2014). Tweetingyour way to victory.Retrieved fromhttp://www.usnews.com/opinion/blogs/world-report/2014/09/19/brazil-and-the-us-lead-the-way-in-political-candidates-social-media-use
TheEconomist Newspaper Limited (2014). Brazil’sPresidential Election: Winning hearts and likes.Retrieved fromhttp://www.economist.com/news/americas/21598975-social-media-will-play-big-part-years-campaign-winning-hearts-and-likes