Personalization Online: Effects of Online Campaigns by Party Leaders on Images of Party Leaders Held by Voters

Tom Carlson, Kim Strandberg, Göran Djupsund

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Research on the increasing importance of party leaders in elections has observed that party leaders maintainpersonal websites, blogs, and social networking sites in order to personalize the image of themselvesby mixing personal and professional matters. This chapter examines whether these efforts affect theparty leader character impressions by voters in a positive way. The chapter presents two experimentsthat examine the impact of exposure to authentic personal websites and, as a form of social media, blogs of party leaders on voters’ perceptions regarding various traits of party leaders during a Finnishelection campaign. The findings are mixed. The perception of one leader was significantly enhanced byexposure to his website as well as his blog. Moreover, exposure to the blog by this politician resulted inan enhanced assessment of his personality traits whereas exposure to his website had positive effect on theevaluation of his professional traits. In making sense of the findings, web and social media approaches,and participant expectancies are discussed.

Titel på gästpublikationHandbook of Research on Politics in the Computer Age
RedaktörerAshu M. G. Solo
FörlagIGI Global
ISBN (elektroniskt)9781799803782
ISBN (tryckt)9781799803775
StatusPublicerad - 2019
MoE-publikationstypA3 Del av bok eller annan forskningsbok


  • BLOGS -- Political aspects
  • Experimental research
  • FINLAND -- Politics & government -- 1981-
  • POLITICAL campaigns
  • Party Leaders
  • Political Communication
  • SOCIAL media -- Political aspects
  • party leader effects
  • political websites

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