Episodes

#50: Platforms and News Publishers: Digital Journalism in the Facebook-Google Duopoly, with Rameez Tase

Rameez Tase, Vice President of Audience Development and Insights at Axios, discusses news publishing in a digital environment dominated by Facebook and Google. Rameez outlines the challenges and opportunities of being a digitally native news outlet, how Axios crafts content to fit contemporary news consumption patterns, and how the organization uses native advertising to sustain a business model in a crowded media environment.

#49: Advocacy for the Tech Industry, with Matt Schruers

Matt Schruers, Vice President of Law and Policy at the Computer and Communications Industry Association (CCIA), discusses the work that CCIA does as a link between the tech industry and legislators. The CCIA represents the interests of large tech firms such as Amazon, Google, Facebook, and Netflix. We chat about the tech industry’s position on GDPR, ePrivacy, and other regulations; the role of competition in tech; and how regulation might affect the Internet of Things.

#48: Cyberattacks on Social Media: Spear Phishing, Trolling, and Disinformation, with Dr. Arun Vishwanath

Dr. Arun Vishwanath, Associate Professor of Communication at the University of Buffalo, shares his expertise on how social media are used to conduct cyberattacks. We discuss the three key tactics that state-sponsored actors use to undermine trust in American democracy: spear phishing, trolling, and disinformation. We delve into Dr. Vishwanath’s research exploring what factors predict users’ likelihood to accept a false friend request on Facebook, what implications these types of attacks have for national security, as well discuss what governments are trying to do to stop these attacks.

#47: GDPR and Political Campaigning, with Brendan Tobin

Brendan Tobin, Head of Growth at Ecanvasser, discusses how the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) will affect political campaigning in the European Union. We talk about what GDPR is, how it will be enforced by legislators, and what the implications of this new regulation are for democracy. Given the multi-level governance structure of the EU, it will take some time to see how GDPR will influence how campaigns engage with companies like Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, and YouTube. Subscribe to the Social Media and Politics Podcast to keep up to date with all the latest developments in the social media space!

#46: Mobilizing the Pack for Political Campaigns and Advocacy, with Tom Lillywhite

Tom Lillywhite, founder of Wilder Digital and the digital campaigning tool ‘Pack‘, joins the podcast to discuss how political campaigns and organizations can mobilize supporters to increase organic reach on social media. We discuss how crowdsourcing ardent supporters can increase organic reach on Facebook and Twitter, as well as how Pack is currently being used for advocacy groups and the Camden Labour Party.

#45: Facebook Ads Transparency in the Irish Abortion Referendum, with Craig Dwyer

Craig Dwyer, co-founder of the Transparent Referendum Initiative, discusses targeted Facebook advertising ahead of the Irish constitutional referendum about abortion on May 25th. The TRI collects “dark” Facebook posts and is building an openly accessible database of targeted political ads. We discuss some of the major issues surrounding the referendum, the difficulties in discerning when a Facebook ad is “political,” and targeted political advertising on other platforms like Google and Youtube.

The Medium post mentioned in the episode.

ForaChange: Craig’s digital campaigning toolkit.

#43: Mobile Apps for Political Campaigns and Advocacy, with Thomas Peters

Thomas Peters, founder and CEO of uCampaign, discusses how mobile apps can be powerful tools to drive engagement for political campaigns and advocacy groups. uCampaign has developed apps for Ted Cruz, Donald Trump, and the Brexit Leave campaign, and Thomas shares his insights into why smartphones are key channels for contemporary civic engagement. We discuss how the app integrates with Facebook, Twitter, and Google, what types of data are collected, and how gamification is used to encourage activism.

#42: WhatsApp-ening in the Netherlands? Social media, GroenLinks, and the 2018 Dutch Local Elections, with Hanneke Bruinsma

Hanneke Bruinsma, local politician for the green party GroenLinks in the Netherlands, joins the show to discuss how her party is using social media in the upcoming Dutch municipal elections. We discuss how GroenLinks party members in the Overbetuwe municipality are using Facebook and Twitter to campaign, and in particular we focus on WhatsApp as a new medium to encourage activism – or “Apptivism” – among local residents.

#41: Online Political Games: Corbyn Run and the 2017 British Elections, with James Moulding

James Moulding, co-founder of Games for the Many, joins the podcast to discuss the success of Corbyn Run, and online political game that went viral during the 2017 British elections. We discuss the development of the game, the role of social media in promoting it, and the potential for online games to spur political engagement in youth.

You can play Corbyn Run here.