The Impact of Social Media on Modern Elections

I attended The 2017 Minnesota Election Summit: The Impact of Social Media on Modern Elections at the Humphrey School.

Sharon Yang, the Government and Politics Associate Manager at Facebook gave an interesting presentation on some of the activity that took place on Facebook during the 2016 campaign. She provided information on their Civic Engagement Tools such as an Issue Page and a Voting Plan Page. The millions of unique addresses on Facebook and the resulting number of messages during the 2016 election is staggering. Since the 2016 election, they have been sending out reminders on local elections. It seems Facebook has programs for constituents to interact with elected officials. Ms. Yang also talked about some of the programs being used in the United Kingdom and France for their elections.

Afterwards, there was a panel that included MN Secretary of State Steve Simon, Mike Dean, the Executive Director of LeadMN, and Aly Hagglund, the Director of Communications of Students United, and Doug Chapin, the Director of the Elections Academy at the Humphrey School.

The impact that social media can have on elections is huge and will probably increase in the future. Something to think about!


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