The Effects of Modern Technology in Voter Turnout

Today’s generation has seen the massive increase in modern technology, specifically in the aspect of media. As television and the Internet become more impactful on society, the more attention paid to the radio and newspapers decrease. One of the prominent effects from media use is displayed in the campaign techniques of the United States’ presidential election candidates. The trend change among media outlets is due to the modernizing times. Less American people find it important listen to talk radio and to read a newspaper everyday.

it is clear, however, the need to be attached to the computers in their pockets and have their eyes glued to TV screens. I will be testing the idea that the people of the United States of America have a higher inclination to vote if they pay more attention to politics through television and the Internet than they do to the radio and newspapers. This hypothesis contradicts the general thinking among political scientists, however.

Commonly, the higher the socioeconomic status of individuals, the more inclination there is to vote. A higher SES indicates the more educated, who are generally more involved in the political process, are more likely to read newspapers. The older generation also tends to rely more on newspapers, as well as talk radio, In order to test my hypothesis, I will use the control variable of education level, separating it into three categories (high school diploma, college graduate and graduate degree). Alexandra Pelosi (2005) inquires about the corruption of the media during the election season, which supports the fact that Americans are truly less informed about the happenings in politics, even though they have more access.

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Henry Brady and Richard Johnston (2006) also argue the fact that the increased use in media greatly affects voter turnout. To create the graphs used to explain my hypothesis, | used data sets from ICPSR. The row variable was set to show the different media outlets in which voters paid attention, using the codes C02, C04, C06 and C08.

The column variable represented the people that voted in the 2012 presidential election (A01) and the control variable is education (R04). The figures show that the majority of the American population did not vote in 2012 election, regardless of education level. All except the figures regarding attention paid to television news. This not only proves the fact that there is a higher voter turnout from those that turn to modern technology for information, but also that television is the favored source of all four mediums. l was most surprised to notice the difference in voted versus not voted when attention was paid to politics in the newspaper because regardless of the education level, the majority did not vote. It was also interesting to see how the voters with just a high school diploma, paying attention to the Internet news (Figure7), voted: the majority did not pay attention to the Internet at all, whereas the college graduate and graduate degree levels had more people paying attention to it.

When analyzing the effects of radio news on voter turnout, I notice the lack in relationship. Most of the people surveyed either did, or did not, vote regardless of paying attention to the radio. In recent elections, the ways presidential candidates campaign have changed with the modernizing technology. Although all continue to travel around the country building the personal connection with the voters, more ads are put out on television, the majority of it being negative. According to Dingfelder (2012), the American population responds more to negative ads than positive ones. These TV campaigns are frequently used due to the fact that nearly evew American home has a television, and is watched on a daily basis. This fact allows a wide range of coverage with minimal effort.

When analyzing the data, it can be understood that when it comes to paying attention to media for national politics, the voters with an education level of at least a high school diploma that rely on television news are the ones which have a higher voter turnout, with the Internet of a person with a graduate degree coming in second. The other media outlets, the newspaper and radio, generally have the same outcomes, minimal effects of media outlet on voter turnout. While 1 used one control variable, education level, there was still the problem of age when focusing on the common knowledge that an older generation pays more attention to newspaper and radio. Age poses a problem because a college graduate can range from 21 to 45 years old, since anyone can have a higher or lower level of education. To further the study, the control variable of age can be tested to see if and how the relationship would change. Splitting the category into two subcategories 0f 18 to 44 and 45 to 65 will allow a simplification of the data for a clearer result.

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The Effects of Modern Technology in Voter Turnout. (2023, May 14). Retrieved from

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