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The emergence of the Internet as the new mass medium of the 21st century now changes the mass media substantially. Information can be distributed at high speed, low cost, and broad scope and as a result, there is egalitarian access to the production and the consumption of news (Prat and Strömberg, 2011) The recent election of Muhammadu Buhari as president of Nigeria has been hailed internationally as a historic transfer of power for Africa‗s most populous nation with social media playing greater role or influenced the fairness of the election. Social media with all their flaws had the power of immediacy. They‗re also very participatory. In an election where you have citizens who are participating, they were also providing the news and information surrounding the elections. It was an empowerment of people through their votes, and also through their ability to disseminate information. That is not to say that traditional media didn‗t play a role. But the social media role was central. The world is becoming increasingly connected via the power of the Internet; Facebook launched an initiative to gain even the most remote parts of society access to the World Wide Web. Political movements have begun to see social media as a major organizing and recruiting tool and the reverse can be said for society. Social media (done right) gives you all this because it‗s inherently a two-way communication system. Rather than getting brand messages, you get recommendations from friends in the form of re-shares and recommended posts, which de-commercializes the brand message.

Social media is that space, the many tools helping to amplify the voices of average Nigerians, taking ordinary voice sand making them extraordinary by bringing them to homes, offices, and places most of them would have probably never reached under different circumstances. It started out as a playground for mostly young jobless people. Today, it has become the battle ground of what would arguably be the most competitive election in Nigeria‘s history. The advent of internet and technology has exposed majority of the global population to different interactive platforms on which different kind of information is exchanged which might significantly have effect on human behavior, decision and judgment (CES,2012). Social media are new information network and information technology using a form of communication utilizing interactive and user-produced content, and interpersonal relationships are created and maintained. According to Eugene, 2015. The popularity of getting political news from social media platforms is greatly increasing.

A 2014 study showed that 62% of web users turn to Facebook to find political news. This social phenomenon allows for political information, true or not, spreading quickly and easily among peer networks. Furthermore, social media sites are now encouraging political involvement by uniting like-minded people, reminding users to vote in elections, and analyzing users‗ political affiliation data to find cultural similarities and differences. As social media gains more popularity and scope, its impact on voters‘ political and cultural perceptions cannot be underestimated as social media practically influences the way users interact, communicate and make decisions on social, cultural, and political issues in today‘s world. The social media has become a powerful medium which may affect voting behavior because of its potential to provide direct and cheap access to the production and consumption of current information at any part of the world without editorial filtering (Sunstein, 2001). Not only do social media provide information about political affiliations, candidates and their party manifestoes, it also provides a platform through which voters across cultural divides can relate and interact with themselves on issues about these candidates. Social media can help taint the reputation of political figures fairly quickly with information that may or may not be true. Information spreads like wildfire and before a politician can even get an opportunity to address the information, either to confirm, deny, or explain, the public has already formed an opinion about the politician based on that information. However, when conducted on purpose, the spread of information on social media for political means can help campaigns immensely.

Open forums online have also been the root of negative and positive effects in the political sphere. Some politicians have made the mistake of using open forums to try and reach a broader audience and thus more potential voters. What they forgot to account for was that the forums would be open to everyone, including those in opposition. Having no control the comments being posted, negative included, has been damaging for some with unfortunate oversight. Additionally, a constraint of social media as a tool for public political discourse is that if oppressive governments recognize the ability social media has to cause change. Today‘s social media has made the world a ―global village‖, with the quick transfer of information overriding the challenges of time and distance (Friedman, 2007). Social media has gradually become one of the important means of influencing the society and this influence is based exclusively on its social aspects of interaction and participation. Nearly every political party in the country used social media to campaign and advance its plans, message and manifestos to supporters including advertising, mobilization and organizing in all the states of the federation, and even fundraising. Facebook, YouTube and especially Twitter were used to let voters know how each party or particular candidate felt about important national issues ranging from security to power. Hence social media became powerful enough to influence voter decisions and choices as many voters who had fixed their minds and conscience on voting a particular party or candidate began to change their minds based on certain information or idea they got online about the party or candidate. Information gotten by a particular voter was also not static, as the same voter would use several internet tools and buttons to broadcast same message to other voters like him through medium such as blogs, Facebook, Nairaland, chat rooms etc. in order to influence them.


The use of emotional appeals in political campaigns to increase support for a candidate or decrease support for a challenger is a widely recognized practice and a common element of any campaign strategy (Brader, T. 2006). Campaigns often seek to instill positive emotions such as zeal and hopefulness about their candidate to improve turnout and political activism while seeking to raise fear and anxiety about the opposition. Zeal tends to reinforce preference for the candidate and party, while fear and anxiety interrupt voter behavioral patterns and leads individual voters to look for new sources of information on divergent political issues (Marcus et al, 2000). Sources of information available to a voter vary widely including the traditional media, TV, radio and newspapers. However, with the advent of online social media forum, most voters can access information, debate on the information and also give feedback on his own views, opinions and expectations from the party and candidate. Although the social media has helped in increasing the awareness about 2019 general election. Rumors, falsehood, propaganda and derogatory information about individual candidates or parties are commonplace online and spread faster than anticipated, often with disastrous outcomes. This is largely attributed to the lack of editorial filtering, and the anonymity of most online users. The internet encourages anonymity of its users, which means that those who write and comment often use nicknames or aliases. This has a huge influence on voter behavior, as most voters who read stories online have a tendency to believe such stories without crosschecking facts and take decisions based on this propaganda. This is a widely known fact among political parties and they use it to their advantage in bringing down their opponents. Previous research has found that it is possible to influence a person’ attitudes toward a political candidate using carefully crafted information about such candidate online, which in turn may influence the voter‘s behavior towards the candidate. Social media can also be used by various parties to propagate false news and propaganda about the opposition in order to disfavor such party or candidate in the eyes of the electorates while exonerating theirs. This has a huge influence on voter behavior as many voters make decisions based on such news they read online. Furthermore, social media has made voters privy to any kind of information about 2019 general election as there are no longer any isolated places or hiding holes.

The private and public lives of society‘s most influential figures including politicians have been made public online. This is because in today‘s world, once a politician declares for a post, his entire life including his educational background, his family, his job and any past mistakes or excesses are made public on social media platforms for people to comment, discuss and publicly judge. Many politicians have been found in compromising positions with their words or phrase taken out of context and magnified to huge proportions by opposition parties in order to discredit them. Many a times, people go to the extent of recording private conversations or actions of these candidates and make the recorded audio or video public on various social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter quickly, with a view to elicit response and vicious backlash from voters and other online users. The belief is that it will go a long way in influencing voter‘s behavior and turning such voter against the candidate since the voter can now judgmentally make decisions about the candidate based on what he said, did or other information about him or her. Even though, such information are refuted sometimes by the concerned party or individual, it remains valid in the minds of many voters who may have made up their mind already or simply are not aware of the true situation.


This study will help beam the searchlight on the impact of social media on creating awareness to voters during elections as a whole based on the information available by Facebook and Twitter. It will also enlighten relevant stakeholders such as political parties, candidates, and even the civil society on how social media can bring about awareness and campaign opportunities if properly utilized. This research study will help stakeholders understand that maintaining a good and healthy profile online with a cordial relationship between the party and voters can positively influence voter‘s behavior. Lastly, this research work will add to the body of knowledge on the already existing scholarly materials on the impact of social media in creating awareness to the society.


This study will examine the role of social media in creating awareness with special reference to the actual effect of Facebook and Twitter on voter‘s and the factors determining the behavior and attitudes that an ordinary voter adopts based on available information gotten on the social media.


The aim of the study is to find out the role played by social media in the 2019 general election awareness creation Facebook and Twitter. Hence the specific objectives are as fallow:

1. To find out the role played by social media in creating awareness in 2019 general election.

2. To determine the level of influence social media has on the success of 2019 general election.

3. To find out factors that influence/drive awareness creation of the social media during 2019 general election.

4. To identify the lesson from the role social media play in 2019 general election


1. What are the roles played by social media in creating awareness in the 2019 general election?

2. To what extend did the social media contribute to the success of the present administration in the 2019 general elections?

3. To what extend did politicians employ the social networking sites of Facebook and Tweeter in campaign for the 2019 general elections?

4. In what ways do social media need improvement to play major roles in elections in Nigeria?

The study used survey research design. Surveys allow for the study of people‘s opinion on a given issue of public interest. According to Onwukwe (2011), ―survey research is concerned with the collection of data for the purpose of describing and interpreting a certain condition, practice, beliefs, attitudes, etc.‖ The purpose is usually to describe systematically the facts, qualities or characteristics of a given population, events, or areas of interest concerning the problem under investigation.


The use of social media in politics has continued to grow in recent times. Since Barack Obama broke the world record in the history of social media use for political purpose during the 2008 US presidential elections, many nations and politicians across the globe have continued to embrace the platform to mobilize their citizens and candidates towards active participation in the political process. (Okoro and Kenneth, 2013). Nigeria had the first real test of social media use for political participation during the 2011general elections. The 2011 general elections offer a unique context and opportunity to examine the use of social media in elections, especially the usefulness and applicability of social media in the electoral environment. Although it seems obvious that social media contributed in no small measure to the success of the 2011 elections, but there are lot of misusage and problems that arise from the social networking community. It is pertinent to understand specifically how particular stakeholders in the 2011 elections, like INEC, politicians/political parties, the electorate, and SOs, used the social media during the elections, including INEC, politicians/political parties, the electorate, and CSOs.


Awareness: Is the ability to perceive, to feel, or to be conscious of events, objects, thoughts, emotions, or sensory patterns. Election: The formal process of selecting a person for public office or of accepting or rejecting a political proposition by voting. Facebook: Is an online social networking service that enables users to chart share and send pictures, and other multimedia items. General Election: Is an election in which all or most members of a given political body are chosen. (Wikipedia 2015) Internet: An interconnected group of computer networks allowing for electronic communication. Social Media: Are computer mediated tools that allow people to create, share or exchange information, ideas and pictures/videos in virtual communities and online networks. Social Network: Is structure made up of a set of social actors (such as individuals or organizations) and a set of the dyadic ties between these actors. Twitter: Is an online social networking service that enables users to send and read short 140-character messages called “tweets”. Case study: Yin (2003) defines a case study as an empirical inquiry that uses multiple sources of evidence to investigate a contemporary phenomenon within its real-life context, in which the boundaries between the phenomenon. .CSO: Civil Organization and Society INEC: Independent National Electoral Commission

NGO: Non-Governmental Organization.


The chapter were able to bring out the whole concept of what the study is all about and the main focus that the study is tend to focus and what is intended to learn from the basic of the study including of important terms and terminology needed for the propose of study.


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