Tweet Acts: How constituents lobby Congress via Twitter
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Twitter is increasingly becoming a medium through which constituents can lobby their elected representatives in Congress about issues that matter to them. Past research has focused on how citizens communicate with each other or how members of Congress (MOCs) use social media in general; our research examines how citizens communicate with MOCs. We contribute to existing literature through the careful examination of hundreds of citizen-authored tweets and the development of a categorization scheme to describe common strategies of lobbying on Twitter. Our findings show that contrary to past research that assumed citizens used Twitter to merely shout out their opinions on issues, citizens utilize a variety of sophisticated techniques to impact political outcomes. The Data: http://repository.iit.edu/handle/10560/3057 The Paper: http://repository.iit.edu/handle/10560/3195
Transcript of Tweet Acts: How constituents lobby Congress via Twitter
- 1. Libby Hemphill (@libbyh) Andrew Roback (@andrew0writer) Illinois Institute of Technology
- 2. How do citizens and elected officials engage one another online? Officials Hemphill, L., Otterbacher, J., and Shapiro, M.A. (2013) Whats Congress Doing on Twitter? Proceedings of the 2013 ACM Conference on Computer Supported Cooperative Work, San Antonio, TX. Otterbacher, J., Shapiro, M.A., Hemphill, L. (2013) Interacting or Just Acting? A Case Study of European, Korean, and American Politicians Interactions with the Public on Twitter. Journal of Contemporary Eastern Asia, 12(1), 5-20. Citizens Roback, A. and Hemphill, L. (2013) Id have to vote against you: Issue Campaigning via Twitter. Extended Abstracts of the ACM Conference on Computer Supported Cooperative Work, San Antonio, TX.
- 3. How do citizens and public officials engage one another online? Shout opinions (Parmelee and Bichard, 2011) Talk to other citizens (Mascara, Black, and Goggins, 2012) Provide information (Golbeck, Grimes, and Rodgers, 2010; Hemphill, Otterbacher, and Shapiro, 2013)
- 4. Evidence that citizens are actually trying to effect change Codebook for analyzing lobbying tweets Training data for automated coding algorithm
- 5. directives attempt to get the listener to do something commissives commit the speaker to a course of action representatives serve to report on the state of the world expressives express a speaker's emotional state declarations change the state of a person or object questions attempt to solicit information from the hearer
- 6. 76,454 tweets 43,079 users 556 Congressional targets
- 7. Obama announces end of deportation of DREAMers Rep. Lamar Smith (R-TX) introduces SOPA SOPA/PIPA 10/26/2011 Blackout Oct Dec Feb 2012 Apr 12/31/2012 Jun Aug Oct Sikh Temple Aurora theater 6/28/2012 House holds A.G. Holder in contempt 1/29/2013 11/6/2012 8/5/2012 7/20/2012 Obama's "Four Part Plan" speech Election Day 6/15/2012 1/18/2012 2011 Fiscal cliff deadline 2013 Dec 12/14/2012 Sandy Hook 11/14/2012 Congressional Report on gun control 10/16/2012 ObamaRomney debate gun control
- 8. Issue Hashtags Immigration reform #immigration 4845 3083 #dreamact 2591 1838 #dreamers 3175 2495 13,249 8767 #fiscalcliff 978 674 #sequestration 914 647 #guncontrol 1743 733 #2ndamendment 1443 1014 #nra 1819 747 #sopa 36,985 21,265 #pipa 25,009 15,633 5498 3712 76,454* 43,079* Federal budget and sequester Gun control Internet freedom #budget #cispa Total Tweets Users
- 9. Iterative coding on 300 tweets (268 unique) 625 additional tweets Codebook and data: http://repository.iit.edu/handle/1056 0/3057
- 10. Speech Act Type N % Directive 228 37% Representative 145 23% Expressive 100 16% Questions 90 14% N/A 48 8% Commissive 14 2%
- 11. Tweet act SA Type Directly oppose/support Promotional FYI Thank you for opposing/supporting Other Campaign ad accusation Loaded policy question Rhetorical question Please oppose/support Disappointed General directive What is your position? I want a response from you I'd have to vote against you I'm your constituent and I oppose/support Analogy D R D E N/A R Q Q D E D Q E C R R N % 108 85 75 66 17 14 12 11 48 46 39 33 27 20 18 18 14 14 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 3 3 2 2 1 5 1 Doing things with tweets C = Commissive D = directive E = expressive R = Representative Q = Question
- 12. Brendan Edwards @ShinerRock @repkenmarchant @johncornyn @kaybaileyhutch Don't use cybersecurity threats to trample on civil liberties. Stop #CISPA! #CongressTMI 8:07 PM 9 May 2012 < attempt to get the listener to do something
- 13. 99% Texas @anonymousatx2 @LamarSmithTX21 my relatives live in your district and i will do everything possible to make sure you are not reelected #NDAA #SOPA #PIPA 12:02 AM 2 Jan 2012 commit the speaker to a course of action
- 14. Nancy @FairTaxNancy @RepSteveStivers Voted "yes" in your #AZ #immigration poll. And I am a voting Buckeye here in our great state of #Ohio 4:32 PM 26 Apr 2012 < report on the state of the world
- 15. Ann Guhin @AnnGuhin @SteveKingIA on @cspan about #immigration he makes ashamed to be an Iowan 1:23 PM 14 May 2013 express a speaker's emotional state
- 16. Aaron Bartlett @aaronazbartlett @SenJohnMcCain What is your view of President Obama's Announcement today #DreamAct 1:23 PM 14 May 2013 solicit information from the hearer
- 17. Directly oppose/support Former Embryo @burnfar @ChuckSchumer I Demand you OPPOSE S. 3414 and S.A. 2575! These amendments are a WAR ON MY #2ndAmendment! WE ARE MANY & WE ARE WATCHING YOU! 9:30 AM - 31 Jul 2012 Please oppose/support Richard Ulsh @4xUlsh @GerryConnolly @MarkWarner I urge you both to please stop or at the very least postpone #Sequestration for the sake of #nationalsecurity 6:45 PM 1 Apr 2012
- 18. Promotion Maria Ines Zamudio @mizamudio @LuisGutierrez said But it is a battle I am still fighting. of deportations outside #immigration court bit.ly/1336dNm 12:59 PM - 5 May 2013 Campaign Ad Accusation PatRCO @patrco @KellyAyotte has been used by @SenJohnMcCain @GrahamBlog & the #NRA. Let her stand alone and explain where SHE stands. 4:08 PM - 14 May 2013
- 19. Id have to vote against you Im your constituent, and I oppose grant williams jsingleterry @my2bits4u @jsingleterry @JohnBoozman You had your chance to do right you chose not to . You will be punished at the ballot box . You have #nospine #nra @ChrisVanHollen I live in Rockville, and I urge you to stop cuts to EPA, CDC and NIH. Don't let our lungs go off the #fiscalcliff #callinday 11:09 AM - 18 Apr 2013 9:28 AM - 20 Feb 2013
- 20. FYI Promotion FYI Promotion
- 21. Ever? Yes. But not really. 76,454 lobbying tweets: 125 replies (0.16%) 34 members (6%)
- 22. Tweet act SA Type Directly oppose/support Promotional FYI Thank you for opposing/supporting Other Campaign ad accusation Loaded policy question Rhetorical question Please oppose/support Disappointed General directive What is your position? I want a response from you I'd have to vote against you I'm your constituent and I oppose/support Analogy D R D E N/A R Q Q D E D Q E C R R N % 108 85 75 66 17 14 12 11 48 46 39 33 27 20 18 18 14 14 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 3 3 2 2 1 5 1 Doing things with tweets C = Commissive D = directive E = expressive R = Representative Q = Question
- 23. How would we even measure efficacy of a lobbying tweet? What illocutionary force do automated tweets have, and who is the speaker for those tweets?
- 24. How should we be citing tweets in publications? What obligations do researchers have with respect to Twitters TOS and brand guidelines? What responsibilities do we have to users?
- 25. Libby Hemphill (firstname.lastname@example.org; @libbyh) Andrew Roback (email@example.com; @andrew0writer) Illinois Institute of Technology http://www.casmlab.org/projects/publicofficials/ https://twitter.com/CaSMLab/lists Thank you, Amazon in Education Research Grants Program.
- 26. The Day We Fight Back With Ed Lee (author of The Fight for the Future) Non-profits Andrew Robacks examining how NPOs use Twitter to organize and build support Fans, fandom, and identity Rizzoli and Isles, #gayzzoli Social Media Data Toolkit Make social media data available to everyone (read: those who dont code)
- 27. General directive FYI Directly oppose/support Please oppose/support attempt to get the listener to do something
- 28. Id have to