Using New Media to Engage with the Government

Since moving back to Northern Virginia from Atlanta in 2013, I have ended up on the email distribution lists for many local politicians. I did not sign up for these emails directly, rather I would receive calls to action from the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, an organization I strongly support. I would receive requests to sign petitions or their emails would provide links to send email to senators and members of congress when bills that would provide them with research and funding opportunities. In some instances, I would receive an email back for the politician, such as Senator Tim Kaine. And for a long time, that’s the only way I would engage…….until last year’s election.

Leading up to the election, to understand more about stances on issues and platforms, I liked various politicians’ Facebook pages and kept up with their posts. I may have “liked” some of the postings, but I did not go to the next step of commenting on them. Since the election, I have liked additional politicians pages, to gain more information and have followed them on Twitter, as well.

Questions for our guest speaker:

  1. Is there one specific media that the government favors and is more likely to use to engage with the community?
  2. Is there a specific approach to take when attempting to engage with any form of government where you would be more likely to receive a response from someone?
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