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Presidential Campaigning in the Internet Age$
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Jennifer Stromer-Galley

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780199731930

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: April 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199731930.001.0001

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Introduction: The Paradox of Digital Campaigning in a Democracy

Introduction: The Paradox of Digital Campaigning in a Democracy

(p.xiv) (p.1) 1 Introduction: The Paradox of Digital Campaigning in a Democracy
Presidential Campaigning in the Internet Age

Jennifer Stromer-Galley

Oxford University Press

This chapter provides an overview of key arguments and goals. A key mission of the book is to help scholars of political communication and digital media contextualize and better understand the shifting practices by campaigns long before Barack Obama was a household name. To do so, this chapter borrows from the work of Robert Denton, looking especially at the political and social context, the organization, fundraising, and image construction of the candidates, as well as factoring in the role of journalists and the hybrid media environment and public opinion polling. The chapter also examines citizen involvement in the campaign, describing how campaigns’ use of DCTs, and the specific affordance of interactivity, highlights that the objective of a campaign is to win, not to genuinely engage citizens in the campaign. This chapter concludes by providing a brief outline of the book, underscoring the shifting campaign practices that occurred between 1996 and 2012.

Keywords:   hybrid media, political campaigns, political communication, digital politics, Internet, interactivity, two-step flow, digital affordances

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