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Sentiment Analysis of Facebook Users Reacting to Political Campaign Posts

Abstract

A recent trend in political campaign studies is the use of sentiment analysis to understand users’ decisions. The scandal of Facebook and Cambridge Analytics is an example of efforts to use social media platforms to impact citizens’ will. This research aims to answer the question: Did the Facebook reactions of users in Mexico reflect the outcomes of the elections and possibly also the users’ emotions toward the political candidates of the State of Mexico in 2017? To answer the research question, we analyzed data collected from 4,128 Facebook posts and their reactions. The available reactions for Facebook users are: like, love, haha, wow, sad, and angry. Doing so revealed some kind of mood from the users in the Facebook comments section and opinions of the local government campaign in the central State of Mexico. The elections studied took place in June 2017. Our findings show that the winning political party had more negative sentiment and fewer posts and users’ discussions of the candidates in Facebook comments sections than the political party with the largest positive sentiment. This party was unsuccessful in winning the elections.

 

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Artículo Tomado De: https://dl.acm.org/doi/10.1145/3382735

Citizen Engagement and Social Media: The Case of Mexican Presidential Candidacies

Abstract

Social media has transformed election campaigns around the world. While it is difficult to determine to what extent social media influence voters’ decisions, there is no doubt that social media platforms impact on candidate advertising and public debate during elections. This research, the methodological formulation of which is based on a case study, seeks to investigate the use of social media during political campaigns to collect signatures of support. In the elections of 2018, aspiring candidates for presidential election required a certain number of signatures of support in order to register as official candidates. We collected social media data on a weekly basis from the Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube accounts of seven candidates and contrasted this data with the number of signatures validated by the electoral authority. We found no relationship between the level of support received and the use of social media in the case of any of the candidates. However, we observed candidates who did achieve the required number of signatures and who did receive official presidential candidate status as a result of their high level of visibility. This research contributes methodologically to the current literature and provides empirical evidence regarding independent candidates in Mexico.

 

Introduction

Social media have been used as low-cost communication channels by various social, public and private organizations to communicate with citizens, customers and/or voters. In this regard, there is diverse scientific evidence that describes the processes and results obtained through the use of social media. This evidence spans a period which begins with the first social mobilizations and ends with their impact on electoral campaigns and the measurement of the level of commitment shown by politicians and institutions.

In Web 2.0, political parties have found a wide range of communicative possibilities via Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, and Instagram. Additionally, other social media have been increasingly used as platforms for the engagement of citizen support in election campaigns (Babaoglu, & Akman, 2018).

There are many examples of the use of social media as a powerful tool for politics, social movements and elections. This happens when technology is combined with the physical coexistence between communities and individuals. This generates digital and social capital through the cooperation or complementation of meanings which the different actors develop (Ruelas, 2016).

Independent candidates in Mexico have a long history of consolidation (Olivos, 2018). Until 2015, citizens could not stand as independent candidates for election at the local level of government without the backing of a political party (Cárdenas, 2015). At this level of government, only six independent candidates were elected and, at the state level, one of them was elected governor of the state of Nuevo León. However, the conditions for competition are extremely unequal. In the words of Lagunes and Arellanes (2016):

The electoral reforms of 2012 (article 35), 2013 (article 116) and 2014 (article 41) prevent independent candidates from competing on an equal footing with political parties. The legal locks strategically placed by the Federal and State Legislatures violate the principle of equity that should normally be applied to electoral processes. The independents have less financing than the traditional parties, scarce access to radio and television time, and in order to stand for election they, require a large number of signatures from voters. (p. 71)

This was the prevailing status quo for independent candidates in Mexico during the 2018 presidential elections. In the scarce research on this subject in Mexico, researchers point out that this new political position has not increased citizen participation (Lagunes and Arellanes, 2016). Nor has the use of new technologies such as the Internet served to promote critical thinking in terms of elections (Cárdenas, 2015). However, it is certainly indicative of progress in Mexico as it opens the door to a greater level of equality between citizens and their authorities (Olivos, 2018).

Independent candidates for national presidential election were a novelty in the 2018 election campaign. Never before had a citizen been able to run for President of the Republic without the backing of a political party. However, the gradual loss of legitimacy of previous Mexican presidents, as well as the decomposition of the Mexican political system have resulted in the overarching protagonism of the political parties (partidocracy). This generated enough discomfort to promote the legal changes that would allow for independent presidential candidates in Mexico.

 

Artículo Tomado De: https://www.igi-global.com/gateway/article/251891

Portales: ¿Administrar contenidos o visitantes?

Raúl es uno de los administradores de portales de gobierno digital más activos que he conocido. Sin embargo, esta rebasado de trabajo. No sólo por que tiene que “subir” y “actualizar” el contenido diario que genera su dependencia, sino por que tiene que contestar todas las redes sociales que se han vinculado con ella.

A diario recibe dos o tres mensajes de twitter solicitando datos, ligas, brindando información que puede “servir” al gobierno. El sitio de Facebook está lleno de mensajes y de posts que responden o comparten la información del gobierno, pero que no se pueden contestar de inmediato por Raúl.

Este ejemplo ilustra el cambio que están viviendo los administradores de portales gubernamentales hoy en día. Si bien, el gobierno se ha abierto mucho más a los ciudadanos y estamos cada día más cercanos a ellos a través del uso de las tecnologías de información y comunicación, no por ello implica que tengamos una comunicación más estrecha o que podamos reunir la información que nos mandan los ciudadanos y analizarla a detalle.

Los portales administradores de contenido

Desde hace unos cinco años a la fecha los portales gubernamentales se han concentrado en organizar su contenido, sistematizar la manera de subirlo para actualizarlo lo más pronto posible y tener una página “viva” a los ojos de los ciudadanos. El software que ha permitido esto se conocen como: “administradores de contenido” (Content Management Systems)

En este sentido tenemos una amplia gama de administradores de contenido para el gobierno. Por ejemplo, percussion es uno de los más comunes que utilizan los portales norteamericanos; CivicPlus y Jadu son otros administradores de contenido muy famosos; el primero tiene una gran cantidad de sitios en municipios norteamericanos y el segundo es una empresa que vincula administración de contenidos junto con formatos de captura en linea y captura de documentos gubernamentales.

Los administradores de contenido han adquirido una gran popularidad por permitir manejar la actualización inmediata, descentralizada y ordenada de la información gubernamental. Evita el retraso que puede generar centralizar los contenidos y validarlos, así como homologar el diseño de la información y su presentación, sin contar con el hecho de que cada dependencia, departamento o agencia se puede hacer responsable de sus propios contenidos y de su actualización permanente e inmediata.

En este sentido, los administradores de contenido nos permiten cubrir dos necesidades fundamentales: enviar información actualizada a los ciudadanos y mantener una presencia en línea en cualquier momento. Esto ha llevado a que muchas administraciones públicas de cualquier nivel – municipal, estatal o federal – tengan un administrador de contenido eficiente y con ello sean portales de gobierno funcionales.

A pesar de cubrir esta necesidad, los administradores de contenido carecen de una plataforma para el cobro de impuestos y para ofrecer servicios en línea para sus ciudadanos. Estas dos plataformas que convergen entre si para crear un portal gubernamental son las que reúnen servicios, transacciones e información. De esta forma podríamos tener un portal completo. Pero realmente está ¿Completo?

El portal con interacciones ciudadanas

Un portal de gobierno tiene al menos tres interacciones básicas con los ciudadanos: 1. solicitud de información gubernamental; 2. Pago de impuestos y servicios; 3. Relación con los ciudadanos. Las plataformas de administración de contenidos cubren esencialmente la primera interacción; una plataforma de transacciones cubre la segunda interacción, pero ¿Qué hay de la tercera interacción? ¿Donde está la plataforma que administre las relaciones con los ciudadanos?

Al llegar la web 2.0 una avalancha de interacciones ciudadanas llegaron a los portales de gobierno electrónico. Desde mensajes en foros, correos electrónicos hasta mensajes en Twitter, Facebook y opiniones en Flickr o You Tube, muchos ciudadanos se volcaron a compartir, criticar, reclamar o simplemente opinar sobre las informaciones gubernamentales que se publicaban en línea. Pero el gobierno no respondió.

Muy pocos portales de gobierno tuvieron una estrategia para atender este llamado de los ciudadanos, en parte por que no estaban preparados para ello, pero también por falta de personal y sobre todo por ser un fenómeno novedoso que no sabemos como tratar o conducir.

De esta forma, los portales de gobierno si bien han tenido interacciones con los ciudadanos no por ello estas han sido administradas adecuadamente, ordenadamente y a tiempo. Los portales carecen tanto de un sistema como de una estrategia que permita establecer una relación cercana con los ciudadanos.

Administradores de relaciones: ¿Administrador de comunidades?

Para cubrir esta interacción, los administradores de los portales han tenido que contratar a una persona llamada administrador de comunidades – community manager – que pueda administrar las relaciones de las personas con el gobierno, explicar, contestar, argumentar o simplemente redirigir el tráfico de ciudadanos hacia los sitios correctos.

Al mismo tiempo han surgido herramientas de software que ayudan y facilitan esta interacción, tal es el caso de Nation BuilderActionsprout attentive.ly Los tres servicios en línea permiten administrar lo que se postea en las redes sociales, colocar contenido e integrar las comunicaciones entre los usuarios y el gobierno

Esta nueva posibilidad de organizar y administrar las interacciones gobierno-ciudadanos no sólo implica intercambio de información, sino que abre la posibilidad compartir y enriquecer datos, conocimientos y aprendizajes entre ambas partes. Ya veremos como funciona esta evolución de los portales gubernamentales hacia una mejor interacción con el gobierno. Al menos para Raúl ya será más fácil su trabajo y podrá interactuar mejor con los ciudadanos.

Para saber más

Una lista de CMS puede encontrarse aquí (Inglés) 

La lista de CMS usados por el gobierno de EU (Ingles) aquí

Referencias

Susan McKeever, (2003) “Understanding Web content management systems: evolution, lifecycle and market”, Industrial Management & Data Systems, Vol. 103 Iss: 9, pp.686 – 692

Sobreconectados: El impacto de Internet en las sociedades

Reseña del libro: OVERCONNECTED: The Promise and Threat of the Internet. Por: William H.Davidow 2011. Editorial Delphinum. Para descargar clic aqui

¿Combatir el COVID-19 o garantizar la privacidad?

Dados los recientes acontecimientos donde se utilizan las tecnologías de información y comunicación para ubicar a los ciudadanos, este audio presenta algunos casos a nivel internacional, donde se ha violado la privacidad como una forma de mantener el control social, pero usando tecnología. Espero les agrade.

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