Skip to main content

Facebook gets central role in Obama 2012 re-election campaign

Image used with permission by copyright holder

President Barack Obama officially launched his bid to remain in office for a second term today — and, once again, Facebook has become a fully integrated part of the political strategy.

Of course, the Obama team has created a fully-formed Facebook page for the re-election, complete with family photos and Obama’s favorite TV show (hint: it’s “Sportscenter.”) But that’s only the tip of the campaign’s social media iceberg.

The newly redesigned now includes additional functionality when logged into Facebook through the site. Most notable is an interactive banner module that allows users to scroll through all their Facebook friends who haven’t yet joined the 2012 Obama campaign’s custom “Are you in?” application.

This feature enables Obama supporters who have joined to quickly remind their left-leaning friends to get involved with the campaign straight from (with or without the help of an “optional message.”)

From the few minutes we spent clicking around, the Obama friend bar is definitely a solid feature that compels you to tell others about the campaign. But it would work far better if it were possible to also view your friends in a list, rather than one at a time. This would enable you to quickly check mark the ones you think would be interested in Obama’s re-election campaign. As it is now, you have to keep scrolling until you randomly find the people you want to contact.

The current functionality has its purpose, however, especially for those with the time and the will to click through each friend for consideration. Many of us, however, aren’t so lucky.

It should come as no surprise that Facebook is central to Obama 2012. The president’s “personal” Facebook page has nearly 19 million “likes,” and his 2012 re-election page has already earned more than 25,000 as of 8am EST today.

In addition, a recent Harvard University study shows that 55 percent of 18- to 29-year-olds support Obama for 2012. Of that demographic, 80 percent had a Facebook account. And that number jumps to 90 percent when looking at only college students.

The ties between Facebook and Washington go even deeper than just marketing potential. Just last week, it was rumored that Obama’s former press secretary Robert Gibbs is considering a high-profile (and high-paying) job with the Palo Alto, California, social network giant.

Editors' Recommendations

Andrew Couts
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Features Editor for Digital Trends, Andrew Couts covers a wide swath of consumer technology topics, with particular focus on…
X (formerly Twitter) returns after global outage
A white X on a black background, which could be Twitter's new logo.

X, formerly known as Twitter, went down for about 90 minutes for users worldwide early on Thursday ET.

Anyone opening the social media app across all platforms was met with a blank timeline. On desktop, users saw a message that simply read, "Welcome to X," while on mobile the app showed suggestions for accounts to follow.

Read more
How to create multiple profiles on a Facebook account
A series of social media app icons on a colorful smartphone screen.

Facebook (and, by extension, Meta) are particular in the way that they allow users to create accounts and interact with their platform. Being the opposite of the typical anonymous service, Facebook sticks to the rule of one account per one person. However, Facebook allows its users to create multiple profiles that are all linked to one main Facebook account.

In much the same way as Japanese philosophy tells us we have three faces — one to show the world, one to show family, and one to show no one but ourselves — these profiles allow us to put a different 'face' out to different aspects or hobbies. One profile can keep tabs on your friends, while another goes hardcore into networking and selling tech on Facebook Marketplace.

Read more
How to set your Facebook Feed to show most recent posts
A smartphone with the Facebook app icon on it all on a white marble background.

Facebook's Feed is designed to recommend content you'd most likely want to see, and it's based on your Facebook activity, your connections, and the level of engagement a given post receives.

But sometimes you just want to see the latest Facebook posts. If that's you, it's important to know that you're not just stuck with Facebook's Feed algorithm. Sorting your Facebook Feed to show the most recent posts is a simple process:

Read more