Are politicians authentic on Facebook?

homeHeaderLogoImageEver wonder how people perceive politicians’ Facebook pages? Gabrielle Grow (a former Master’s student) and I recently published an article in First Monday that examines the role authenticity plays in electoral social media campaigns.

The research focused on a number of candidate Facebook pages used during the 2012 U.S. Presidential Election Campaign. It examined authenticity based on four dimensions: authority, identity, transparency, and engagement.

The article is available online here.

Congratulations to Gabrielle – this research was based on her Master’s thesis. The thesis was excellent, and what a great accomplishment to also publish it in an (open access!) academic journal.

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New book: Communicating Citizenship Online

My dissertation research was published in July 2012 by Hampton Press. The book is entitled “Communicating Citizenship Online,” and is available for purchase on Amazon. Here is a brief summary:

How do youth organizations use new media? How do they address Internet savvy youth who are also apathetic citizens? How has this evolved with new demands for interactivity in social media? These are contemporary challenges facing any organization active online. Spanning seven years of research, this book examines these issues and considers three separate political contexts with a variety of analytical tools.

In a broad sense, this is a study about contemporary citizenship and how it is reflected in organizational aims. The book also provides a comprehensive overview of web-based communication, starting in the heyday of official websites and moving into the realm of social media. It offers important insights into the relationship between context and content.