My analysis of the effects of the US Election on social media was published by Social Media Today.
1) Using social media for fund raising monetised the format, and using the money for mainstream (and digital banner) advertising, relegated social media to being simply being another marketing channel.
2) The nation turned to social media to see what voters were saying about the election – it was validated at the vox populi. But simultaneously, a lot of content online was a kind of talk radio triviality (think ‘big bird’), and thus relegated social media to ‘light entertainment’.
3) The unification of many users around the Obama message provided a commonality to the online expression which defied the factional individualism that has arisen, and been championed, through the channel. At the same time, the strong use of the medium by right wing ideologues has empowered individuals as de facto affiliates of the Republican party – decentralising membership and control.