Congressmen in the age of social network sites: Brazilian representatives and Twitter use

  • Francisco Paulo Jamil Almeida Marques Federal University of Ceará
  • Jakson Alves de Aquino Federal University of Ceará
  • Edna Miola Federal University of Sergipe
Keywords: Internet, Representation, Congressmen, Social Network Sites, Twitter, Brazil

Abstract

This paper investigates the factors that influence how members of the Brazilian House of Representatives adopt Twitter as part of their political communication strategy. Our intention is to understand the main variables that lead legislators to invest time and resources in microblogging. This quantitative study examined all of the 457 official congressional accounts registered on Twitter. These accounts were monitored weekly between February 2012 and February 2013. After empirically exploring the data, this work reflects on the results thanks in part to an examination of the literature on the intersection of the Internet and politics. The results indicate correlations between the use of Twitter and attributes like age and occupation of leadership positions.

Author Biographies

Francisco Paulo Jamil Almeida Marques, Federal University of Ceará

Francisco Paulo Jamil Almeida Marques is a Professor at the Federal University of Ceará, Brazil. Marques has a PhD in Communication Studies (Federal University of Bahia, Brazil). In 2006 he was a Visiting Scholar at St. Louis University, USA. Over the last years his research interests have focused on Internet and Democracy. 

Jakson Alves de Aquino, Federal University of Ceará
Jakson Alves de Aquino received his PhD in Human Sciences  (2008) from the Federal University of Minas Gerais, where he developed an agent based model of the evolution of cooperation. He is professor of political science at the Federal University of Ceará.
Edna Miola, Federal University of Sergipe
Edna Miola has a PhD in Communication Studies (Federal University of Minas Gerais, Brazil). She works at the Federal University of Sergipe, Brazil. Edna is involved in collaborative research with the Media and Public Sphere Research Group (EME/Federal University of Minas Gerais) and the Research Group on Politics and New Technologies (PONTE/Federal University of Ceará). Her interests include public deliberation, participation, cyberdemocracy, media policies and public service broadcasting.
Published
2014-05-04
How to Cite
Marques, F. P. J. A., Aquino, J. A. de, & Miola, E. (2014). Congressmen in the age of social network sites: Brazilian representatives and Twitter use. First Monday, 19(5). https://doi.org/10.5210/fm.v19i5.5022
Section
Articles