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Tweeting to PowerThe Social Media Revolution in American Politics$
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Jason Gainous and Kevin M. Wagner

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780199965076

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199965076.001.0001

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Congress 2.0—Who’s Tweeting?

Congress 2.0—Who’s Tweeting?

(p.76) 5 Congress 2.0—Who’s Tweeting?
Tweeting to Power

Jason Gainous

Kevin M. Wagner

Oxford University Press

This chapter explores the use of Twitter in campaigns and measures the ways members of the US Congress and challengers used social media in the 2010 election. The chapter explains and defines the use of Twitter in the political context and the typology set forth in the book for characterizing the content of individual tweets. Along with the descriptions and empirical measures, this chapter explores and develops the theory that political leaders can use social media to control the flow of information and bypass the traditional gatekeepers in the mass media. This chapter uses quantitative and qualitative evidence to describe how politicians take advantage of the new information networks to accomplish their goals.

Keywords:   Twitter, social media, gatekeeper, Congress, campaigns

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