Graduation Date

5-2020

Document Type

Senior Thesis

Degree

Bachelor of Arts

Primary Major

History

Program Director

Alison Howard, MA

Thesis Advisor

Jordan Lieser, PhD

Abstract

Traditionally, Presidential candidates would go door to door and town to town, sharing their political ideas in the hope of gaining supporters. This paper aims to analyze the evolution, contribution, and the future of internet use in terms of gaining support and its crucial ability to help persuade American citizens to vote. Focusing primarily on the elections from the year 2000 to 2012, data and research will be used to analyze how web usage has evolved from president to president. The future of campaigning will continue to revolutionize through the internet because of its ability to alter the traditional methods of expression, communication, and organization in electoral politics. Each president within this time frame has delved into the World Wide Web and made impacts on the United States through this new medium. Email, campaign websites, and other platforms of communication via the internet have and will continue to revolutionize politics in the foreseeable future. Contemporary methods of conversing with a wider audience through social media platforms such as YouTube, Facebook, and Twitter are noticeably effective tools to use in campaigns. Presidential candidates have witnessed the internet's advancement in politics and used its tools to promote their campaigns. Scholars have yet to realize the power within the World Wide Web and its ability to change politics. Digital information can visibly bring a positive or negative service to voter persuasion. This paper shows the manifestation of change in the process of how citizens and presidential candidates interact through the internet.

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