Social Media Analysis: Politicians and Social Media, analyzes the recent ‘FB likes controversy’ and the power of social media in the field of politics.
Social Media plays a major role in political campaigns all around the world. After the President of USA Barack Obama’s successful Presidential social media campaign ‘Change’ in 2008, the world saw the potential of Social media. Barack to Modi- social media has proven its worthiness in the field of politics.
Sri Lanka is moving towards a digital age in a fast pace. During the Sri Lankan presidential election, 2015 social media played an outstanding role in electing its current president Hon. Maithripala Sirisena. Though the traditional & official advertising was restricted nearing the election, both candidates conducted their non-official social media campaigns throughout using various noteworthy techniques.
However, yesterday(19th March) Western Provincial Councillor Udaya Gammanpila made a controversial allegation that his, Wimal Weerawansa’s and ex-president Mahinda Rajapaksa’s Facebook accounts were hacked. With an Interview with Ceylon Today he said “within just two hours, last Friday, wiped out over 2000 ‘likes’ in my account” and he further stressed that he had “informed Facebook about this invasion into our accounts”.
Rather than being a victim of hacking, it is far more likely these pages had a drop in likes due to the deletion of inactive or fake profiles. Facebook recently released an official announcement stating that they will take measures to remove deactivated profiles from the total Facebook page likes count, in- order to maximize the insights and consistency of Facebook pages. As you can see below, this Official Facebook Announcement was made on March 5th, 2015;
This shows the negligence of the Facebook admins of those pages for not being updated about what’s happening on Facebook. And the owners of those pages- the politicians, should think twice, no thrice before making a press conference about it, they should’ve researched first. All in all, after those allegations a set of statistics of Sri Lankan politicians FB pages, were re- surfaced (Courtesy of www.socialbakers.com);
As you can see, these analytics show us specifically where the Likes originated from. The point to note here is the 16,472 Turkey fans. Hold on to that thought, until we analyze some other page analytics as well.
Again, note the 18, 512 Turkey fans in Hon. Minister Rajitha Senaratne’s Facebook page.
A staggering 65,454 fans from Turkey. More Turkey fans over Sri Lankan fans for a Sri Lankan politician?
Let us bring this to your attention, there are ‘Facebook Likes FOR SALE’, not just FB LIKES there’re ‘YouTube Views’, ‘Instagram followers & likes’, ‘Twitter followers & Retweets’ etc. for sale as well. But in this matter lets only focus on Facebook likes; there are various countries offering Likes, but Turkey likes are the cheapest. Below is a comparison of the prices for USA likes Vs Turkey likes;
While 1,000 USA FB likes are offered for a price of 45 USD, Turkey can offer more than 3,000 likes for the same price. That explains the Turkey fans in our above-mentioned politicians FB page Likes’ count. This tactic- well ‘cheap stunt’ is being used by many public figures and brands to ‘UP their game’ but it won’t essentially Up their game, those likes are just merely a number on their page with no use at all.
Out of all, politicians should maintain social courtesy and professionalism here by driving forward with good example but unfortunately not in Sri Lanka.