@JunckerEU vs. @MartinSchulz: How leading candidates in the 2014 European Parliament elections campaigned on Twitter
Keywords:Public Relations, Political Communication, Twitter Communication
Twitter has become a valuable tool both for politicians trying to monitor conversations and communicate with constituents as well as for publics interested in discussing and engaging on political matters. This is the first study to research Twitter use during the 2014 European Parliament elections. Twitter posts by the two main candidates in the elections, Jean-Claude Juncker and Martin Schulz, were comparatively analyzed with specific emphasis on frequency of Twitter use, content of tweets and interaction levels. Results showed that unlike previous research studies on Twitter use by politicians, the candidate that used Twitter less often and used the interactive characteristics of Twitter less frequently won the election. However, the winning candidate focused significantly more on specific topics and functions of relevance to European voters, such as immigration and the targeting of specific EU countries.
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