When Social Media Doesn’t Determine All: The Topics and Narratives of Latvian Political Parties on Facebook During the 2019 European Parliament Elections Campaign
Keywords:European Parliament elections, social networking site Facebook, political communication, political parties in Latvia, narratives
AbstractOver the last decade, the implementation of campaigns by political parties and their candidates on social media platforms has become an integral part of political communication. Political communication studies have long indicated that elections are becoming personalized, with more focus on party leaders or individual candidates. But studies on communication by political parties to understand the identity of parties and their potential in communication with voters remain relevant. The aim of the paper is to analyse the visual election materials of the political parties from Latvia on the social network Facebook during the 2019 European Parliament (EP) election campaign. The research period is two weeks before elections. The subject of the study is election materials on Facebook accounts of the parties representing the national parliament of Latvia. A codebook for analysis has been developed, containing common and specific variables, designed to explore the verbal and visual dimensions. The results of the study allow us to draw conclusions about the changing success of new populist and traditional parties, as well as to look at the role of Facebook in elections in a little-studied country.
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