Politics and the Internet

Hello everyone, welcome to my blog in Week 6! This week we were talking about the connection of politics and the Internet. Since I am an international student and I am not eligible to vote in Australia, I decided to reflect on some issues from the Czech Republic. Recently, we had a chance to face very interesting internet campaigns related to the politics in the Czech Republic. In January 2013 the presidential election was held. It was the first presidential election where the Czech citizens chose their president directly.

Originally, there were 11 candidates. “…there’s a Czech, Japanese, Austrian, Jew and Avatar… no, this is not an opening of a joke, this is an opening of Czech presidential election.”  Czech people tend to make every situation comical. This joke that was posted on the social networking sites when candidates announced their nominations. It refers to the former Prime Minister, Jan Fisher, and his Jewish roots and to the current Minister of Foreign Affairs, Karel Schwarzenberg, and his  Austrian roots. Next candidate, Avatar, was music professor Vladimír Franz who has tattoos on his whole body including his face. Last candidate in the joke is the Senator Tomio Okamura who has Czech-Japanese origin.

presidential election

The internet and new communication technologies in general played very important roles in this election. Candidates tried to reach out young voters via social media. Thanks to this promotion, they persuaded a lot of young people to vote. They promoted themselves or cast a slur on the other candidates. Finally, the presidential election had an impact to each person in the Czech Republic.  Thanks to new communication technologies, the election became a viral topic. The candidacy of Vladimir Franz came from the Internet. Initially, his candidacy was meant as a joke but young people started to support him more and more. It perfectly reflected people’s satisfaction with the political situation in the country. We needed the change! Unfortunately, the change did not came.

Finally, the former Prime Minister Milos Zeman won the second round of the Czech Republic’s presidential election. He won 55%  compared to Foreign Minister Karel Schwarzenberg’s 45%.


Czech presidential election, 2013. (2013, 26 August). Wikipedia. Retrieved from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Czech_presidential_election,_2013


Pew Research Center’s Survey

The users are motivated by numbers of advantages that the social media offers to them. Everything is easy, fast and free. Over the years,  new ways of communication have been developed and each new technology has been praised but also criticized. These opinions have been influenced by numbers of attributes. The social media is a powerful communication tool that you can love or hate, but you can’t ignore it.

I have also found an official survey called the Social networking sites and our lives created by the Pew Research Center. According to this survey, the number of people using social media has doubled since 2008. They also found that Facebook is a dominant social networking site. Nearly 92% of social media users are on Facebook. 29% of users use MySpace, 18% use LinkedIn and 13% use Twitter (Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project, 2011). This result is different from my survey. It is probably influenced by a place where the survey took place, because the Pew Research Center made a survey among Americans.

What is also very interesting, Facebook became an universal social media. The users visit it daily while other social networking sites are only occasional destinations (Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project, 2011). The following chart shows frequency of use for users of different social networking sites:

social networking sites

The survey of Pew Research Center was also targeted to relationships on social media. The average Facebook user has 229 Facebook friends. The survey also showed that for most people the”dormant relationships” are very important . Those relationships are not currently active but can still be a valuable source of the information. (Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project, 2011)

For those who are more interested in social media topic, I highly recommend go through the whole survey. I am sure that you will find a lot of useful and important information there!


Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project. (June 16, 2011). Social networking sites and our lives. Retrieved from: http://www.pewinternet.org/~/media//Files/Reports/2011/PIP%20-%20Social%20networking%20sites%20and%20our%20lives.pdf

Social Media and Motivation: Survey results

From my previous post you know that I did an on-line survey about  social media.  I created an on-line questionnaire using the Survey Monkey tool. My questionnaire had 5 questions that helped to find out more about people’s motivation to use social media. I shared my survey link on my blog and also on my Facebook timeline. (How easy it was!) Finally, I get 22 participants. Here are the results of my survey:

Q1. Which social media do you use?

The respondents answered that they mostly use Facebook. The following chart shows all the answers:

Which social media do you use

Q2. Why did you choose this social media?

The main reason why people started to use social networking site is that many of their friends were using it and they recommend them to start using it too. Also, they are using social media because it makes communicating with friends easy.

Q3. What are the pros of using social media?

The biggest advantage of social media is that you can communicate not only with close friends, but also with those who you do not have the opportunity to see very often. The other advantages are sharing information and photos,saving time, socializing and getting inspiration. The fact that social networking sites are widely spread tools and everyone is on it is also important. Social networking sites are also useful in sharing the news from school.

Q4. What are the cons of using social media?

The main disadvantages of  using the social media are addiction to technology, stalking. wasting of time, losing sense of privacy, data theft, cyber bullying, alienation, spam, procrastination etc. Another huge disadvantage of the growing dependency  of social networking sites is that the quantity of friends  has become more important than the quality of friends.

Q5. Can you live without social media?

Personally, I found this question very interesting because the responses were very even throughout the survey. 50% answered that life without social media is possible and 50% can’t imagine themselves without this tool.

Can you live without social media