Social Media Among Top Sources for Political News and Advocacy

A Harvard Institute of Politics survey of more than 2,000 adults between the ages of 18 and 29  brings concrete evidence about social media usage for political advocacy; ending several years of debate as to whether the medium is effective in the political arena.

Social Media Usage in General

Over the past year, this group’s usage of Facebook grew from 64% using the site to 80%. The number is even higher, 90% adoption, among four-year college students. Twitter, although found to be less relevant for politics among the group, still rose in adoption over the past year from 15% to 24%.

These numbers are, in part, responsible for the finding that social media is viewed as having a greater political impact than in-person advocacy.  27% percent of the group reported that compared to in-person advocacy, they believe that advocating for a political position using sites like Facebook, Twitter, blogs, and YouTube makes more of an impact.

Where We Like to Get Political News

The study also reported that 36% adults age 18 to 29 are interested in receiving their political news through social media sharing on Facebook; a full 14% more than political blogging websites, and 20% more than official campaign Twitter feeds.

The chart below shows the % of the group interested in different media delivery methods for political advocacy.

Click to enlarge the image

Mobile usage is interesting, and is likely to rise as technology continues to allow for ease of access to information from mobile devices.

To read the study in its entirety – visit the Harvard Institute of Politics website.

 

 

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Craig Grella

Founder and Executive Director at OrgSpring
Craig is the founder and executive director or OrgSpring, a nonprofit dedicated to helping other nonprofits achieve their missions online. Through tips and tutorials, Craig's goal is show nonprofits how to use technology to become more efficient, grow their list of supporters, and increase online donations.