recommended reading

Can Twitter Chatter Get Obamacare Defunded?

Nata-Lia/Shutterstock.com

Buried deep in Twitter's archives, the first users of "Obamacare" symbolize a fundamental divide in the Twitter universe: @WSJopinion, the Wall Street Journal's opinion team, and @victoria_29, a lover of NASCAR from "God's Country-Texas."

Do the @victoria_29s of the world have the power to affect national policies on topics like health care via Twitter? If the "Obamacare" case is an indicator of broader trends, the answer is no, probably not. In particular, this summer's campaign to "defund Obamacare" proves that even grassroots political movements on Twitter might be AstroTurf: Fake public outrage manufactured by traditional players in Washington like special-interest groups, think-tanks, and a handful of elected officials.

Efforts to gut funding for the Affordable Care Act are underway on Capitol Hill and computer screens across the country. Conservative groups like Heritage Action, Tea Party Patriots, and ForAmerica are spending hundreds of thousands of dollars on ads and multi-state advocacy tours. At the same time, the Twitterverse has seen a gradual swell of conversation about health care -- 1.93 million tweets over the past two months. This summer has seen more tweets than the summer when the Supreme Court ruled on the health-care legislation (1.6 million tweets), the spring when Rush Limbaugh called Sandra Fluke a "slut"(338,000 tweets), or the winter when the Obama Administration struggled to compromise with religious communities on the birth-control mandate (562,000 tweets).

So why now? Why is the Twitterverse fixated on a political issue that seems to be in its twilight?

Read the full story at TheAtlantic.com.

(Image via Nata-Lia/Shutterstock.com)

Threatwatch Alert

Thousands of cyber attacks occur each day

See the latest threats

JOIN THE DISCUSSION

Close [ x ] More from Nextgov
 
 

Thank you for subscribing to newsletters from Nextgov.com.
We think these reports might interest you:

  • Modernizing IT for Mission Success

    Surveying Federal and Defense Leaders on Priorities and Challenges at the Tactical Edge

    Download
  • Communicating Innovation in Federal Government

    Federal Government spending on ‘obsolete technology’ continues to increase. Supporting the twin pillars of improved digital service delivery for citizens on the one hand, and the increasingly optimized and flexible working practices for federal employees on the other, are neither easy nor inexpensive tasks. This whitepaper explores how federal agencies can leverage the value of existing agency technology assets while offering IT leaders the ability to implement the kind of employee productivity, citizen service improvements and security demanded by federal oversight.

    Download
  • Effective Ransomware Response

    This whitepaper provides an overview and understanding of ransomware and how to successfully combat it.

    Download
  • Forecasting Cloud's Future

    Conversations with Federal, State, and Local Technology Leaders on Cloud-Driven Digital Transformation

    Download
  • IT Transformation Trends: Flash Storage as a Strategic IT Asset

    MIT Technology Review: Flash Storage As a Strategic IT Asset For the first time in decades, IT leaders now consider all-flash storage as a strategic IT asset. IT has become a new operating model that enables self-service with high performance, density and resiliency. It also offers the self-service agility of the public cloud combined with the security, performance, and cost-effectiveness of a private cloud. Download this MIT Technology Review paper to learn more about how all-flash storage is transforming the data center.

    Download

When you download a report, your information may be shared with the underwriters of that document.