Once upon a time, there were presidential campaigns without social media or even cable television. In fact, in 1960, it was considered groundbreaking to broadcast the Nixon/Kennedy presidential debates on network television. In 2012, however, the Obama/Romney debates were broadcasted, analyzed and critiqued by news networks and social media. For this Project, you will research the history and development of mass media and write a report that tracks its use in presidential elections since 1960.
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You are a media consultant who has been hired by a startup social media company. The company wants you to write a formal research report that answers the question “How have changes in mass media influenced the ways people experience presidential campaigns?” In your report:
- describe major milestones in the history of mass media between 1960 and today
- compare and contrast the use of mass (and, as appropriate, social) media in the following presidential campaigns:
- 1960: The Nixon/Kennedy Campaign
- 2012: The Obama/Romney Campaign
- identify how social media differs from mass media
- argue how changes in media have impacted the ways people experience political campaigns