The Role Of Social Media In Voting Behavior And Its Negative Side In Politics

This article depict the role of social media in voting behviour and its negative in politics. It explain how social media platforms has helped in voting for a candidate of thejr choice through the participation of people. This article also give a full detial of the negative seffect of social media in voting behaviour

The significance of social media in voting behavior cannot be overemphasized, recounting how the arrival of the internet has played a massive role in transferring and accessing information, overriding the communication challenges between the sender and sendee. The outcome of social media has gradually become one of the important means of influencing society, and this influence is based specifically on social aspects of interaction and participation. As social media gains more grounds as an instrument for participation, its impact on voters' political and cultural perception cannot be misjudged or underestimated as social media practically influence the way users interact, communicate and respond to political issues online.

The role of social media on voting behavior among the voters is influenced by a lot of factors ranging from tribal, ethnicity, and religion, leading them to make a concrete decision on whom to vote for. These factors, such as ethnic, religious, and tribal affiliations, have a long way in influencing how people vote for their choice of candidates. Social media as a computer-mediated tool has become a powerful platform where users can access information and respond to issues concerning their daily life affairs in a virtual community. Interestingly, it has also become a tool for measuring public opinions about a particular subject matter. Its emergence has also become a powerful medium that may affect voting behavior because of its potential for quick transfer and access to the production and consumption of the latest information concerning political, social, and cultural issues in any part of the globe. However, the negative side regarding social media cannot be left out, changing the way people decide for whom to vote, thereby creating dichotomy and conflict between the supporters of each political party. 

In addition, social media also provide a means through which voters across cultural diversity can relate and interact with themselves on issues about their candidates. Social media platforms such as networking sites, blogs, mobile newspapers, Twitter, Facebook, etc have made it possible for the supporters to campaign and mobilize not only the youth but all the classes of internet users for them to discuss and decide about a particular candidate of their choice. This brought a variety of interesting news about their choice of candidates, providing the users to read, respond, interact, haggle and debunk any issues online. Thus, it provides a means where every political party can campaign and advance its plans, messages, and manifestoes to its supporters. 

More so, social media has also made it possible to increase the popularity of candidates and their parties which has the potential to make or mar their chances of winning the election. This is done by campaigning in order to instill positive notions such as zeal and hopefulness about their candidate to improve the high turnout of people while seeking to create fear and anxiety for their opposition. Thus, it creates the opportunity for people to know about a candidate, giving them the required information about the person's background, status, and the position such candidate has held in public offices.

Social media has also served as a platform for political education. This serves as a means to carry their supporters along in their political programs and educate them on major policies they intend to carry out if elected. They use different approaches through social media to influence the electorates by engaging them in seminars, workshops, conferences, etc., where political issues are analyzed in order to invoke people's support. This gives the opportunity for the electorates to make a choice among the existing party that will meet up with their expectations.

Furthermore, social media has also become a veritable means of socialization, which influence the behavioral pattern of individual both politically and socially. Information organs such as radio, television, and newspaper that one hears about particular candidates have a huge impact on the people. Having enumerated the role of social media in voting behavior, the negative side of social media in politics cannot be left out. Despite the numerous advantages of social media in improving the voting system, there are also a lot of negative effects of social media on voting behavior which will be discussed below.

The negative side of social media in voting behavior is that it can be seen as a direct manipulator of the election result and a change in political issues and debates between candidates. Social media platforms such as Twitter, Facebook, etc., can be used for the falsification of election results through the E-voting system. Even after the result are out, social media can play a significant role in casting doubt on the results and driving public opinion to refuse them, leading to demonstrations erupting in the country. 

In addition, social media has contributed negatively to increasing the pressure among voters through biased posts, thereby creating political apathy among the citizens. Its users use those platforms as a tool of discrimination that expresses prejudice against a particular group of people or a candidate, i.e., hate speech.

More so, the negative side of social media in voting behavior is that it gives room for those who are not eligible to cast their vote for a candidate through the use of an e-voting system since everyone uses social media for social interaction and participation. This indicates that everyone, irrespective of age, can exercise his/her franchise in an election which goes contrary to the legal code of conduct.

In conclusion, social media has played a significant role in many areas of people's lives, including deciding their voting direction. It has become a tool that has helped in bridging the gap in accessing information in any part of the world. However, the negative side of social media has been talked about, enumerating how social media could be a direct instrument of manipulating election results. 

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