Nowhere was the consensus more clear on the outcome of Wednesday’s presidential debate than social media.
While the 90-minute sparring match spurred a variety of reactions, three things were made abundantly clear: Big Bird is endangered, Jim Lehrer lost control and Mitt Romney crushed President Barack Obama.
It was the first presidential election since the growth of sites like Twitter and Facebook, and the debate solidified how social media has changed the landscape of interaction.
Until recently, debate watchers would have waited through the entire broadcast to hear analysis and reaction from a small cadre of television pundits.
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Social media has democratized the commentary, giving voice to a far wider range of participants who can shape the narrative long before the candidates reach their closing statements.
“People still use old media to watch the debates, but they use social networks and other new media to have influence, voice opinions and be involved,” Scott Talan, an assistant professor of communication at American University who studies social media and politics, said.
“Old media is not dead; it’s growing. But now we have more people involved and engaged because of digital means.”
Reflecting the changing times, many television analysts now monitor Twitter and Facebook feeds and use information gleaned from those platforms to inform their punditry.
The debate focused on domestic issues with a numbers-heavy discussion of the economy, debt and entitlement reform that produced strong reactions on Twitter from its earliest moments. The debate became the most tweeted event in political history.
However for Latinos, it was what the candidates weren’t talking about that got the most buzz.
Many were baffled by the fact that not only was mediator Jim Lehrer seemingly ignored but issues like immigration and Romney’s “47 percent” comment did not even get a mention. Read the full article on FOX NEWS Latino.