Sharing fear via facebook: A lesson in political public relations

Jan Hendrik Boehmer, Michael B. Friedman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Our study compared the use of fear messages on Facebook by Barack Obama and Mitt Romney during the 2012 U.S. presidential elections. Results show that written fear messages embedded in photographs posted on Facebook by both candidates affected the degree to which those photographs were shared. More specifically, photographs containing written fear messages were shared more often than photographs not containing written fear messages. Furthermore, while the challenging candidate, Mitt Romney, used more photographs containing fear messages, the increase in shares was consistent across candidates. Implications regarding information distribution within communities, public relations practitioners specializing in political campaigning and society as a whole are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)5-15
Number of pages11
JournalMedia Watch
Volume6
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2015

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Public relations
facebook
anxiety
candidacy
presidential election
community

Keywords

  • 2012 election
  • Content analysis
  • Motivation theory
  • Protection
  • Social media

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Communication

Cite this

Sharing fear via facebook : A lesson in political public relations. / Hendrik Boehmer, Jan; Friedman, Michael B.

In: Media Watch, Vol. 6, No. 1, 01.01.2015, p. 5-15.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Hendrik Boehmer, Jan ; Friedman, Michael B. / Sharing fear via facebook : A lesson in political public relations. In: Media Watch. 2015 ; Vol. 6, No. 1. pp. 5-15.
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