Republicans gearing up for 2016 by launching aggressive social media campaigns

GOP using social media to get more voters aboard, a strategy that worked for President Barack Obama in 2008

republican presidential candidates look to social media for new voters gopsocialmedia
Meet the social network…ing candidate!

2016’s Republican presidential hopefuls are taking a page from the last place you’d think they would turn for ideas: current president Barack Obama, FoxNews.com reports. Obama was labeled by several publications as the first social media president — social media platforms were just coming of age during the beginning of his presidency. Ever since the beginning, Obama has been active on social media, regularly answering voters’ questions throughout his presidency.

Now today’s Republican candidates are looking to social media to appeal to voters, too. Only in recent years did the Republican Party start using technology and social media to woo voters. Technology is a realm that the Democrats have had a strong hold on, according to the National Journal. Republican politicians have become more active on social media to fight that democratic advantage. According to FoxNews.com, Republican candidates aren’t just using Facebook and Twitter — two of Obama’s favorite social media platforms — but are also testing out newer apps as well. Former Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina, for example, is trying to reach voters through Periscope, a video-streaming app owned by Twitter.

Kentucky Senator Rand Paul, another Republican presidential candidate, prefers to use Meerkat, one of Periscope’s competitors. Jeb Bush, former Governor of Florida (1999-2007) and the younger brother of former President George W. Bush, is also running for the Republican nomination. Bush also used Meerkat to connect with likely voters on Twitter.

However, some candidates still didn’t have their heads in the social media game. Bush made headlines when he hired (and fired a few days later) 31-year-old Ethan Czahor as the chief technology officer of his political action committee (PAC). Czahor had a history of making negative remarks about gays, women, and minorities.

Fiorina and Texas Senator Ted Cruz failed to even register websites with their name on it, such as CarlyFiorina.org and TedCruz.com. The domains have been taken over by a Fiorina critic who called attention to her tenure as CEO of Hewlett-Packard and an Obama supporter who supports immigration reform, respectively.

The Republican National Committee hired Gerrit Lansing as its Chief Digital Officer to spearhead the social media effort. Lansing, whose resume shows his experience in Washington regarding digital and tech issues, showed that the Republican Party is serious about winning voters via social media. “Gerrit’s depth of experience has given him valuable insight into the ever-evolving world of digital campaigning, and we are fortunate to be able to take advantage of his unique knowledge,” RNC Chairman Reince Priebus told FoxNews.com.

“I’m thrilled to be joining the RNC’s digital operation, which has already taken such great strides towards victory in 2016,” said Lansing. “By expanding and adapting our digital capabilities, we will bring Republican values and ideas to more voters than ever before. I am proud to be a part of these unprecedented efforts.”

Gaming

Goodbye, Machinima: YouTube gaming channel pulls the plug after 13 years

Machinima, a YouTube gaming channel that was launched in 2006, has suddenly shut down, with all of its videos set to private. The #RIPMachinima hashtag is now making the rounds in social media to reminisce about the channel's content.
Home Theater

Plex is the latest player to contemplate the subscription streaming game

With massive reach thanks to its client app being supported virtually every media device on the planet, Plex is now looking at the future of its media curation platform. A future that may include free and subscription services.
Home Theater

From the Roku Ultra to the Fire TV Cube, these are the best streaming devices

There are more options for media streamers than ever, so it’s more difficult to pick the best option. But that’s why we're here. Our curated list of the best streaming devices will get you online in no time.
Computing

Could the next Microsoft HoloLens be announced at MWC 2019?

After not having a presence at Mobile World Congress for three years, Microsoft is now sending out media invites for a press conference on February 24 during the annual event in Barcelona. Could a next-generation HoloLens be on the way?
Social Media

No yolk! A photo of an egg has become the most-liked post on Instagram

Until this weekend, the most-liked post on Instagram was of Kylie Jenner's baby daughter, which has around 18 million likes. It's now been knocked off the top spot not by a stunning sunset or even a cute cat, but by an egg.
Social Media

Invite your friends — Facebook Events can now be shared to Stories

Facebook is testing a way to make plans with friends to attend an event -- through Stories. By sharing an event in Facebook Stories, users can message other friends interested in the event to make plans to attend together.
Social Media

A quick swipe will soon let you keep bingeing YouTube on mobile devices

The YouTube mobile app has a new, faster way to browse: Swiping. Once the update rolls out, users can swipe to go to the next (or previous) video in the recommended list, even while viewing in full screen.
Photography

Starting your very own vlog? Here are the best cameras to buy

Any camera that shoots video can be used to vlog, but a few models stand out from the crowd thanks to superior image quality, ergonomics, and usability. When it comes to putting your life on YouTube, here are the best cameras for the job.
Social Media

Twitter extends its new timeline feature to Android users

Twitter users with an Android device can now quickly switch between an algorithm-generated timeline and one that shows the most recent tweets first. The new feature landed for iPhone users last month.
Social Media

YouTube to crack down on dangerous stunts like the ‘Bird Box’ challenge

YouTube already bans content showing dangerous activities, but new rules published by the site go into greater detail regarding potentially harmful challenges and pranks, including certain blindfold- or laundry detergent-based stunts.
Social Media

Nearly 75 percent of U.S. users don’t realize Facebook tracks their interests

Did you know Facebook tracks your interests, including political and multicultural affiliations? According to a recent Pew study, 74 percent of adult users in the U.S. have no idea Facebook keeps a running list of your interests.
Mobile

It’s back! Here’s how to switch to Twitter’s reverse chronological feed

Twitter has finally brought back the reverse chronological feed, allowing you to see your feed based on the newest tweets, rather than using Twitter's algorithm that shows what it thinks you want to see. It's easy to switch.
Social Media

Nearly a million Facebook users followed these fake Russian accounts

Facebook purged two separate groups behind more than 500 fake accounts with Russian ties. One group had ties to Russian news agency Sputnik, while the other had behavior similar to the Internet Research Agency's midterm actions.