Politicising Platform, or Another Campaign Tool: Locality-Related Differences in the Perception of Facebook’s Role in Pre-Election Period

Roman Hájek

Abstract


In recent years, Facebook has become a regular part of political campaigning and as such a subject of an extensive research. Yet relatively few studies have focused on audience perspective and the perception of Facebook in campaigns. The aim of this explorative study is to contribute to this area; it compares perceptions of Facebook’s role in a campaign held before communal elections in two localities in the Czech Republic. Based on qualitative data from diary research and semi-structured interviews, it discusses the role of communication context (especially the character and diversity of local information channels) in the perceived position and influence of Facebook in the pre-election period. The results show that both Facebook’s role and influence can be understood quite differently, depending on the character of communication platforms used in the campaign. The study also analyses people’s expectations of the social media site, which in turn may lead to certain disillusionment as to the character (especially interactivity) of the campaign and, consequently, politics in general.

Keywords


Facebook; media perception; media use; election; diary research

Full Text:

PDF


DOI: https://doi.org/10.15847/obsOBS1232018915

License URL: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/2.0/