The technological development of congressional candidate web sites: How and why candidates use web innovations

James N. Druckman*, Martin J. Kifer, Michael Parkin

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

80 Scopus citations

Abstract

The Internet offers political candidates a new way to campaign. Part of the Internet's novelty comes from technological options not available in most other media. Candidates, however, must weigh various benefits and costs in using a given technological innovation. For example, technology that allows for increased user interactivity may lead to a more stimulating web site but might distract users from the campaign's central message. In this article, the authors use data from 444 congressional campaign web sites, over two elections, to examine how candidates approach web technology. They investigate the factors that lead candidates to utilize or avoid particular technological features. They show that technological adoption is determined by both practical and strategic political considerations. Of particular interest, the competitiveness of a candidate's race leads the candidate to use more sophisticated presentation technologies but less advanced interactive innovations because these latter options interfere with the candidate's message.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)425-442
Number of pages18
JournalSocial Science Computer Review
Volume25
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 1 2007

Keywords

  • Campaigns
  • Candidate strategy
  • Internet campaigning
  • New media
  • Web technology

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Sciences(all)
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Library and Information Sciences
  • Law

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'The technological development of congressional candidate web sites: How and why candidates use web innovations'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this