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Title: Virtual Geographies and Electoral Politics: PAP’s 2015 electoral campaign in cyberspace
Authors: Neo Shu Qi
Keywords: cyberspace, electoral campaigning, Facebook, GE2015, PAP, real-space
Issue Date: 2017
Citation: Neo Shu Qi (2017). Virtual Geographies and Electoral Politics: PAP’s 2015 electoral campaign in cyberspace. ScholarBank@NUS Repository.
Abstract: Internet technologies have facilitated new ways of political interactions in cyberspace, bringing about new spaces of electoral campaigning that is entwined with everyday political life. In the newly emerging interdisciplinary field of cybercampaigns, existing literature have largely remained quantitative and overwhelmingly focused upon social movements and opposition parties. This thesis draws together electoral and virtual geographies to conceptualise cyberspace as a new space of political interaction and electoral campaigning, that is closely intertwined with real-space. Using the case of Singapore’s General Election 2015 (GE2015), this thesis interrogates the ways in which the incumbent People’s Action Party (PAP) seeks to extend their political influence into cyberspace, and what these mean for the electorate. The most popular online space of mutual political interaction between the PAP and the electorate during GE2015 was Facebook. To this end, (i) a content and discourse analysis of PAP’s Facebook page illuminates how the GE2015 online electoral campaign is embedded within broader offline socio-political structures, (ii) questions posed to PAP electoral candidates through political forums uncovers how the ruling party seeks to construct their cyberspaces of influence, and (iii) interviews with citizens active on PAP’s Facebook aids in understanding the subjective reception of PAP’s cyberspatial activities. In so doing, I hope to demonstrate the symbiotic and intertwining relationship between cyberspaces and real-spaces of electoral campaigning, and what this would implicate for the changing nature of electoral politics for both political parties and the electorate.
Appears in Collections:Bachelor's Theses

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