ME, YOU, And US: Constructing political persona on social networks during the 2015 UK General Election.

Bethany Usher


This article offers statistical and discourse analysis of political leaders’ profile pages during the 2015 UK General Election ‘short campaign’ as a means to better understand the construction of political persona on Social Network Sites (SNS). It examines this as a group production and promotional activity that variously used patterns and routines of both traditional and digital media to display leaders as party branded selves.  Performances strived for balance between authority and authenticity, using the political self as a spectacle to direct microelectorates to specific actions.  This study demonstrates how self-storytelling is shaped by the coded conventions or “house rules” of SNS, which are viewed as inescapable institutions for maintaining public visibility.  It examines how linguistic and visual elements, linked to different political ideologies, chimed with Twitter and Facebook users and looks to the impact on political campaigning.


Persona; social networks; political marketing; celebrity; microelectorates; authenticity; authority

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Twitter Profiles

Bennett, Natalie. (Account Created: Oct 2008)

Cameron, David. (Jan 2010)

Clegg, Nick. (Jun 2008)

Farage, Nigel. (Jan 2009)

Miliband, Ed. (Jul 2009)

Sturgeon, Nicola. (Jun 2010)

Wood, Leanne. (Apr 2008)

Facebook Profiles

Bennett, Natalie.

(Sep 2012)

Cameron, David.

(Sep 2013)

Clegg, Nick. (Mar 2008)

Farage, Nigel.

(Sep 2010)

Miliband, Ed. (Jul 2010)

Sturgeon, Nicola. (May 2013)

Wood, Leanne. (Apr 2008)



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