Twitter analysis shows how digital natives react to Australian democracy

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Twitter has released new research showing that young voters aged 18-24 consider the online actions of political candidates to be extremely important, with 63% saying it would influence their vote.

This compares to 47% of the general Australian population who said a politician’s online actions would influence how they voted in the May 21 federal election.

The data was based on more than 2,300 interviews conducted by YouGov with Australian voters, which revealed that 80% of young people were discouraged from voting for a politician who spread misleading or misinforming information online. Other bad behaviors likely to influence young voters include getting into fights online (53%) and having a politician criticize their opponent on social media (30%).

The Australian Electoral Commission (AEC) has given permission for the social media giant to launch a campaign encouraging young voters to register to vote.

The #MyFirstDemocracySausage campaign wants to encourage young people to make their voices heard by exercising their right to vote in May.

According to Kara Hinesley, ANZ’s public policy director on Twitter, it was important to promote the political power of new voters in the upcoming election.

“The public talk on Twitter is more important than ever during elections, with research showing that more than a third of young Australians will get the majority of their political information from social media during the election campaign,” said Hinesley.

Young people surveyed said they would vote for politicians who demonstrated positive behavior online, such as encouraging informed and civic debate (30%), demonstrating community impact (29%) and Responding to voters’ requests for assistance (16%).

Other research results highlighted the importance of climate change policies for young voters, with one in three people aged 18-24 saying it topped the list of critical issues they would vote for. . Next come questions about the economy and health care (including COVID-19).

AEC data indicates that 17.1 million Australians, or 96.5% of the estimated proportion of eligible Australians, are so far registered to vote in the upcoming election. The national youth registration rate is lower (84.4%), with more than 1.2 million people in this age group registered to vote.

The AEC’s Evan Ekin-Smyth, director of digital engagement, said people who were 17 but had turned 18 on or before election day could not register to vote online.

“Even if you are not a first-time voter, eligible Australians should keep their registration up to date before the voters list closessaid Ekin-Smyth.

“We are thrilled to see this willingness for young Australians to register to vote, share their #MyFirstDemocracySausage experience and support Twitter’s broader efforts to elevate credible and trustworthy information about their service in this federal election. year.”


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