July 30, 2013Published by: Drew Benvie

Are politicians finally getting twitter?



There are no shortage of twitter gaffes that well meaning but clueless politicians have committed. From Aidan Burley’s misjudged ramblings on last year’s Olympics to George Osborne’s attempt to appear like the “common man” by tweeting a picture of himself eating a £10 burger, UK politicians just don’t seem to take twitter well. But maybe that’s all about to change. Have politicians finally understood twitter?

Clearly feeling ecstatic that the economy isn’t as bad we all thought , George Osborne recently visited a few businesses such as a Tesco depot where employees were working late shifts. He tweeted about each visit and included the hashstag #hardworkingpeople. While communication firms have apparently praised Osbrone for this use of the hashtag, it isn’t revolutionary or as funny as him eating a £10 burger.

However, it is a step in the right direction for Osborne and other politicians should follow suit. Politicians who use twitter to appear more “human” will only face backlash and ridicule from a skeptical audience. Instead, politicians should use twitter to relay important information to their constituents and any activities they are doing that illustrates their commitment to their position. Osborne has done this with his #hardworkingpeople hashtag. Politicians, particularly in the UK, are perceived as being plain and any attempt to move away from that notion, particularly on social media, will only result in mockery.

 When it comes to twitter, politicians should stick to the plain and simple. Anything else will incite mass heckling from the public.

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