How Social Media is influencing WB polls

12 Apr,2016

 

Taking the theme of “Impact of Social Media on Elections” a level deeper than General Elections, the Internet & Mobile Association of India (IAMAI) with the support of Facebook India and The Campaign 360, has released a report on the impact of social media in the West Bengal Assembly elections. This report, the first in a series of Assembly election reports, follows the social media impact report that IAMAI published in 2014 on the eve of the General Elections.

 

According to the report, there are 70 High Impact constituencies in West Bengal, the results of which will likely be influenced by social media users. There are 21 medium impact and 203 low impact constituencies in the State.  The report contends that 24% or 1 in 4 Constituencies which have been classified as ‘High Impact’ could determine the eventual winner in the State.

 

 

A web survey of a representative sample of 250 social media users also found that TV and Print still stand as the most trusted media sources for election related content, while 41% rely on Social Media and 21% access Digital News. The report finds that 2 out of 5 Social media users in West Bengal also consider Social Media as the most reliable source of election information.  A vast majority, 90% of Social Media users are following the Bengal Election on Social Media.

 

 

Additionally, during the 10-day tracking period between March 22 and 31 using social media “listening tools”, corruption emerged as the topmost topic of discussion. Mamata Banerjee was the most discussed leader in Bengal while TMC was the most discussed party. The Left Front has minimal presence on Facebook and Twitter both from a Party and Leadership perspective. The BJP on the other hand has high exposure but relatively little presence (39% Social Media Share versus 17% vote share in 2014) on the ground. The new Facebook feature ‘Facebook Live’ (Live video feature) is among the most popular with politicians.

 

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