Manufacturing Popularity

A few weeks ago allegations surfaced that 15% of U.S. Presidential candidate Mitt Romney’s Twitter followers were apparently fake. Oh, whoopee doo! Honestly, whether or not Romney’s 100K spike in followers, which apparently occurred almost overnight, were real or manufactured is beside the point. The real news here is the surging importance among politicians to solidify their social media presence.

Younger voters in particular are arguably more skeptical of a political candidate who is less active or accessible online. A lack of digital engagement—which has never really been an issue in the Obama camp—can be stigmatizing and suggest a candidate is ‘out of touch’ with technology and the pulse of the voting public at large.

At the very least it’s worth considering if Likes and Followers actually bolster political credibility and if the push for digital clout (not klout) in the Obama and Romney campaigns will ultimately translate into votes this coming November.