Impact of Big Data and Political Microtargeting on Donald Trump’S 2016 Presidential Campaign
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On January 20th, 2017, Donald Trump was inaugurated as the 45th President of the United States. His opponent, Hillary Clinton, was a seasoned politician who was favored to win the election. However, Trump produced one of the biggest political upsets in modern day history. This explanatory case study aimed to explain one of the reasons that Trump won by looking at the role that technology played during the 2016 presidential election. Specifically, this study examined how big data was leveraged to influence voter behavior during the campaign. Data drawn from articles, interviews, and videos published during the campaign were collected and analyzed thematically. Results identified three main themes that were particularly salient: mobilization of voter databases, data-driven microtargeting, and Facebook influence. This study highlightes the potential benefits of targeting voters using big data analytics as well as the potential risks related to issues of privacy.
- Computing