Tuesday, May 31, 2011

'Weinergate' and the Brave New World of 21st Century Politics


Politico Arena Topic: 'Weinergate' a Cautionary Tale?

The Anthony Weiner Twitter incident will certainly serve as a cautionary tale about the risks of social networking. Most Americans are at risk of having their email and social networking accounts hacked and their personal information stolen. It is a fact of life and elected officials are no different.

However, in the brave new world of 21st century politics, Twitter, Facebook, and other modes of social networking have become a necessity for elected officials and candidates looking for a way to connect with generations of constituents and voters who utilize that technology daily. Social networking allows politicos the ability to connect absent the media filter — and to do so cheaply and often. Especially for those politicos who seek to develop a broad base of support beyond their geographic constituency, social networking is crucial.

The Weiner Twitter incident will have little impact on the use of social networking by politicos; in fact, more and more politicos will be expected to utilize social networking technologies as time marches on.

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