Impact of social media on Politics

This story from the Spectator illustrates something that we all know, but often ‘forget’ about the internet – not everything that is out there is true. When studying pressure groups the role of social media, especially when looking at New Social Movements, is key and has fundamentally changed the way that many pressure groups operate. However, some operate on the mantra that all publicity is good publicity – and for this the internet can be a wonderful tool (and hence why every student seems to rely on using the Fathers4Justice example).

This article explores a falsehood that was put out on social media in the form of a meme though, designed to suggest that the MPs in the UK care only for their own well-being. The merits or not of this argument can be debated at length – the more salient point here is that to further the argument this meme was put out but distorted the truth of the situation. This in itself is both a useful reminder for students of Politics as well as a useful example of the role of social media.

If you take the time to read the article however the author also discusses frustration at Parliament and the televisation of it when there appears to be so few MPs in attendance. This could equally be used an evidence for Parliament not fulfiling it’s scrutiny duties of the government.

Finally, as this piece is an opinion piece, it is worthy of noting the writing style – the persuasive nature of this piece is how 25/40/45 mark essays should sound. Too often they are a bland description of the facts of two sides of an argument: you do need to show an understanding of both side but ultimately this is an argument – argue it!