It Was Social Media Wot Won it… Or so They Said!

It was social media that would decide the election- or so they said.

The traditional right wing newspaper and other media are losing their power to the force of the new media online- is what they told us.

And yet, when the election came round the hopes and dreams of all the right wing media came joyously (for them) true.

#Milifandom was a hit!

The #GreenSurge was huge!

Where did all those hashtag users go when it came down to cold, hard crosses in the box on election day?

If we analyse Twitter- as more people than there are hashtags seem to do- we can see that some of the biggest Social Media trends have all favoured Labour or other smaller parties such as the Greens.

One of the biggest Twitter trends this year have been the double-whammy of #CameronMustGo and #GetCameronOut which dwarfed even Beyonce in sheer volume.

In response there was a meagre trend for the #Cameronettes – which it has to be said is one of the creepiest trends in the world, as surely only someone with a penchant for the type of sado-masochism that can only be delivered from the most expensive of private schools (a sort of 50 shades of boys’ shower-rooms) would use this hashtag!

If we look at the traffic we clearly see that the tories were absolutely pummelled in the social media war:

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And yet here we are- the other side of May 7th with a majority Tory Government.

However this happened, as I am sure that there are innumerable reasons one thing is for sure- social media did next to nothing.

But why. Well there are a few reasons:

1. People don’t go on social media to make their voting decisions
You can make as many witty hashtags as you want but the only people listening to them are the people who already agree with you. Those who don’t, but are interested in politics will either unfollow you, block you, or laugh at you. So in short political hashtags have zero impact in changing people’s minds.

2. The majority of voters don’t use social media much
The majority of voters are old, and rich and have no need for tweeting or writing statuses or keeping up to date with the latest trends and how people are using them. Until all the young voters show out in force the oldsters will win out every time. If you could vote with an app or by pushing the red button (or green button if you’re so inclined) on your remote then elections would go in a seriously different way!

3. Old people still get their opinions from Newspapers
People are so sucked in by the media that the Sun were able to run a pro-SNP front page in Scotland and an anti-SNP front page in England on the SAME day, and clearly people were OK with that?!
Old people don’t use Twitter, they certainly don’t go there to get their opinions but they do read papers and they STILL have a huge impact on people’s opinions. Until we get a change in media coverage in this country the right wing parties will always do well.

Having criticised social media, it can be a force for good. Although it doesn’t change minds, it galvanises people, and brings them together. You can be a force for good with social media if you want, and you should.

You might not get people to change what mama and papa taught them but you might get your charities heard, you might get people to petition and give up their time for a cause that they believe in and you might make a real difference.

So use social media and wield its mighty power! There’s no point swinging it at the giant shields of ingrained belief- this will only be deflected right back at you. Instead, find the weak points, and the soft spots and attack, prevail and change the world for the better!

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A typical Primary School in the year 2024

Teacher: Good morning customers and welcome to another lesson of basic corporate maths, sponsored by The Generic Cola Company. Last time we spent our lesson looking at the statistical relationship between how much money your parents invested in Generic Cola’s stock market shares and your end of year grade. This week we will be focussing on the earnings and outgoings of your households. So, Timmy your parents earn 75,000 UK Dollars is that right?
Timmy: Yes sir.
Teacher: And what percentile of earnings does that put them in?
Timmy: The 60th percentile sir.
Teacher: Excellent Timmy, and if you listen in lessons you will surely improve on that.
Timmy: I hope so sir.
Teacher: Of course you do, Timmy. Now, if Timmy’s parents are earning UK$75,000 what percentage of their earnings are going towards basic tier tuition fees?
Tammy: 63% Sir?
Teacher: Very well done, Tammy. Tommy! Stop talking in class or I will fine you, your parents already owe £30 this week! OK, so before moving on, Tilly you can leave the class to go and receive your personal one to one teaching and massage- do say thank you to your parents once again, the money that they have donated to this school is highly commendable and something that we should all aspire to. Your parents have shown through the money that they clearly love you very much. On with the lesson customers! There are a number of jobs people can do whereby they will not be able to send their children to school. If a bin man is earning UK$7000 a year how would you express as a percentage the increase in wages needed for this person to be able to feed themselves?
Tully: 450%?
Teacher: Close but too low, it’s actually 475%. Now, an average ‘Generic cola Premier League’ striker, what percentage of their wage do they have to pay in order to buy the right to have a child?
Tinny: 0.000000000000000000000000001%
Teacher: Excellent, and the same question for a paramedic
Tally: 100000000000000000000%
Teacher: Perfect, and what would a paramedic earn if the ambulance service was privatised?
Tommy: Errr, More money, which is good.
Teacher: Partial credit, Tommy! Yes, a privatised service would benefit the income of paramedics, meaning that they could then afford to have children and send them to school, putting more money in to schools so we can provide a better education, which means…
ALL: Richer, better kids!
Teacher: Exactly customers! And this will stop you…
ALL: Being poor and evil!
Teacher: Wonderful customers, well done. Well that’s the end of today’s lesson and I hope you are looking forward to next week lessons; 1+1= more money which is good!

The Great British Sell-Off

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So thanks everyone for baking your cakes that represent British institutions. Now George Hollywood and Dave Berry will come round to your tables.

Dave: Thanks for baking this Royal Mail cake. What I’m going to do is cut it in to fifty pieces and sell them all for less than they’re worth, that way they’ll sell fast and I, err I mean we, will make a quick profit!
Contestant: Do I see any of the profit?
Dave: Not directly of course, but the profit will be used for stuff we all benefit from like… stuff, you know; it’s all a bit complicated; it’s best not to confuse the voters, I mean viewers. OK, so after we have sold the slices then it will let the buyers sell it on for profit; everyone gets richer that way.
Contestant: What about me?
Dave: Well, yes except you. The thing is I know all the cake-buyers and they’re great guys and they love to make money so they’ll be really happy.
Contestant: But it’s my Post Office cake.
Dave: It is your cake but it’s our country, I mean show, and we make the rules so you kind of have to do what we say whether you like it or not.
Contestant: What if everyone stopped viewing the show?
Dave: Fine, we can just carry on doing what we want. The lower the viewer turnout, the more power we have.
Contestant: What if we called for new hosts?
Dave: You’ll just get the same kind of chaps; we all learned to bake at the same school you know. It’s win/win really!
Contestant: Sounds like lose/lose
Dave: Well that’s just different perspectives! Anyway, I’m off now and I’m taking your cake with me.

One piece for me; the other piece for me too. It's basic economics!

One piece for me; the other piece for me too. It’s basic economics!

George: So this is your NHS cake?
Contestant: Yes, shaped like the NHS logo, the ingredients are healthier to emphasise its role in supporting the nation’s health
George: Looks great! How much would you be willing to sell it for?
Contestant: It’s not for sale, the TV license fee covered my baking costs; have some if you like!
George: This “free cake” idea you’re peddling is mad; why would you basically give it away when you can sell it for a tidy profit?
Contestant: Like I say, we’ve all paid for it already, and making money isn’t that important to me so long as everyone gets a slice!
George: But what if I want a bigger slice than Dave Berry?
Contestant: You don’t need a bigger slice! In fact you’re a bit chubby Hollywood, and Berry could do with putting on a bit of weight so you would get a smaller slice; you get the slice of cake that you need!
George: What’s your name again?
Contestant: Joe Public
George: Yeah, listen here Joey-boy! You clearly don’t know what’s good for people; money is what people need, and people have to choose to earn it and reap the rewards of their graft; this fairness talk just means greedy people are going to steal your cake!
Contestant: You’re the greedy one who wanted more; don’t demonise others! Plus, I’m the one who did the graft so all the cake should go to me.
George: Don’t be a fool, making things isn’t what makes money; selling things makes money.
Contestant: But people won’t be able to afford to buy it?
George: That will incentivise them to get better jobs and earn more!
Contestant: But if everyone sells then there will be no one to make, then they’ll be no more cake; your logic is flawed not everyone can have the high-paid sales jobs without a product!
George: You bakers and your odd perspectives, anyway shove off while I sell your cake!

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