Political Parties Embrace New Media

    March 27, 2008

New media usage is a commonplace activity for U.S. adults in all major political parties, according to BIGresearchs’s "Simultaneous Media Usage Study."

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(Photo Credit: BIGresearch)

The most popular new media used most among Democrats, Republicans and Independents are cell phones, video games and instant messaging. Libertarians have higher than average use of new media. Thirty-seven percent of Libertarians regularly blog, while 26 percent of Democrats, 25 percent of Independents and 22 percent of Republicans do.

 "New media offers candidates with an alternative or complement to their traditional media spending," said Gary Drenik, president of BIGresearch. "By actually listening to potential voters and using all media, not just traditional, candidates can build an ad strategy that is more likely to influence votes."

U.S. Internet users also have an increasing belief that the Internet is an important part of political campaigning, according to research release by the USC Annenberg School Center for the Digital future.

The campaigns of the remaining major U.S. presidential candidates are aware of this and they all have well developed Web sites. One area of new media the candidates have not doe much with is video games.

Video game designer and researcher Ian Bogost wrote recently on Water Cooler Games about why games have been a small part of the 2008 campaigns.

"The most influential reason is also the most obvious: since 2004, online video and social networks have become the big thing, as blogs were four years ago," Dr. Bogost wrote. "But another comes down to limited investment on the part of the political community in creating new games-certainly games and blogs and social networks and video can all coexist."