Republicans Use Technology for the Election

GOP mobileCatching up to Democrats' use of technoloy in previous elections, the G.O.P. is making inroads this time.  

In the 2012 presidential election, the Obama campaign had far more digital staffers and people analyzing voter data than did the Romney campaign. Since then, Republicans have been investing in analytics and a "Comms College" for social media interactions with the press.  

The G.O.P. is also using mobile and web technologies to reach voters. With display ads, the campaign is sending pop-up messages to users on YourTube and browsing news.

With this mobile approach, the campaign is skirting issues of privacy and invasiveness. Catherine Tucker, a professor from the Sloan School of Management at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, told The New York Times. "If you're going to do this incredibly specific and intrusive form of advertising, the way you can make it successful is by making it feel less like advertising. You're sacrificing the pushiness. It has to feel like a conversation." 

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Discussion Starters: 

  • How would you react if you saw a pop-up ad for a political candidate?
  • How could you further expand on and explain Professor Tucker's advice?