We need to talk about A/B testing: Brexit, attack ads and the election campaign

13 Nov

With the general election a month away, how are the parties targeting voters on Facebook with messages about Brexit? Tristan Hotham (University of Bath) explains how A/B testing is being used to identify the most effective campaign themes. Political parties using Facebook ads have a powerful capacity to hone their messages. Unlike in the past – where expensive and hard-to-organise […]

Social media transparency data is giving real time insight on party strategy at #GE2019

9 Nov

The upcoming general election is the first general election in the UK where social media companies are publishing transparency data, showing which political advertisements are being displayed on the platforms, who is paying for them, and the amounts being spent. Facebook is, by far, the largest platform for social media political advertisements in the UK. In the first full week of the campaign to the 4th of November, there was £175k of spending on campaign related advertisements on the platform, … Read more

Brexit: democracy needs journalists to be transparent about their political sources

29 Oct

Twitter is more popular among Remainers – 18% of them get their news via 280 characters, as opposed to 10% of Leave voters. But, for other social networks, the differences are smaller and not statistically significant in most cases. The problems of polarisation – and of silos – are created by journalists and politicians themselves, write Meera Selva and Richard […]

The NI Department of Justice #EndingTheHarm campaign viewed over a million times on Snapchat in August 2019

19 Sep

Transparency data released this week by ephemeral messaging app Snapchat has shown that the NI Department of Justice #EndingTheHarm campaign made over a million impressions over an 18 day period last month. The campaign, part of the Tackling Paramilitarism programme, made 1,138,048 impressions over the course of the campaign. Of the 15 organizations who had political campaigns on the social network in the UK over the course of 2019 so far, it ranked 8th in terms of impressions behind Police … Read more