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Bad Grades for Barack Obama

08-29-2008 03:21 PM CET | Politics, Law & Society

Press release from: ethority GmbH & Co. KG

ethority analyzed around 90,000 authentic user opinions found in forums, blogs and news sites concerning the two candidates running for president of the USA. German-, English- and Spanish-speaking contributions on the internet were evaluated and show that the democratic candidate Barack Obama has a greater buzz (percentage) compared to his republican competitor John McCain. However, in terms of sentiment, especially among German- and Spanish-speaking internet users, McCain and Obama are nip and tuck. Buzz-wise both candidates’ scores are almost even throughout English-speaking contributions on the web.

Never before has a US presidential election attracted that much attention and raised such an interest in Germany, as it is the case today. One of the most crucial reasons most likely to cause this effect is its strong presence on the internet. Both campaigns actively use web 2.0 services such as forums, blogs and social networks to get their “word” across. But what campaign related topics are discussed most frequently on the web and how do internet users react to or reflect those topics? How high is the buzz on the internet concerning the two candidates? Are there differences across various language areas when it comes to user opinions of Obama and McCain and their political views?

David Nelles, publicist at ethority, interprets the results of the study as follows:
This buzz analysis shows that campaign managers in the US are not only aware of the change of social media consumption but anticipate it. User generated communication channels are used in the USA, as well as in German- and Spanish-speaking communities, to discuss political topics related to the upcoming presidential election this November. This change of media usage should inspire German campaign managers to follow this example. If the big German parties still want to reach their voters in the future, they have to make room in their campaigns and integrate digital communication channels, because they constitute an unprecedented opportunity to participate in the decision-making process. Internet users have long reached beyond classic forms of media such as print and TV. While it was hard to form a political opinion aside from traditional media and the circle of family and friends before there was web 2.0, YouTube & Co. provide a platform with exponential growth where opinions are formed and decisions are made.

Fiana de Guzman

T +49 (0)40.300.699.833
F +49 (0)40.300.699.844

ethority GmbH & Co. KG
Büschstr. 7 (Ecke Gänsemarkt)
D-20354 Hamburg

ethority is a social media analysis company that specializes in monitoring and analyzing social media for online and word-of-mouth marketing. We emphasize our multilingual capabilities and international approach by providing multilingual market research and marketing tools in order to enhance your brand’s popularity, its sales and the target group’s conception of it. Our capabilities extend into consulting, planning and execution of word-of-mouth marketing strategies.

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