Facebook, Campaigns, Pages…and Politicians

By the time I’m writing, there are 1524080 Facebook accounts in Lebanon. Out of these persons, 1101840 are 21 and older. By removing fake profiles, accounts with incorrect birthdays, accounts that are owned by Lebanese (and not foreigners), and accounts that are rarely used, we’ll probably get a number close to a million.

Back in 2009, the electoral body was made out of 3257407 voters. Let’s maximize the number for 2013 and make it four million eligible voters. Let’s also higher the percentage of people who will actually go and cast a ballot and make it 55%. That makes 2.2 million Lebanese voters in 2013. 1 out of 2.2 million is equal to 45%.

In a nutshell, 45% of the Lebanese who will vote in 2013 have Facebook accounts. I will make the assumption that 75% of the Lebanese on Facebook will log in at least once in the next 9 months. That makes 33% of the voting population.

The drafted elected law will probably die or get amended in the parliament. The plans are in making larger constituencies, or at least keep their sizes the same. The more the constituencies are big, the more asphalting the roads, paying for the expatriates to come home, and bribing the local population is expensive and less effective. the margin won’t be slim enough to be easily changed by politicians using the traditional means. Buying 2500 votes in small electoral districts like Batroun won’t have the same effect once Batroun is merged with 3 other districts in a single constituency. That’s why a politician seeking to be a lawmaker needs to change his plans. He needs to target a bigger population and shower it with his speeches and opinions. The elections are 9 months away, and the campaigns should start soon enough. You can wait a few months and advertize on Billboards……or you can get a bigger electoral clientele and advertize your Facebook page on Facebook starting…Now!

Facebook was made for politics and elections. They even have a politics and government team that offers Facebook politicians tips.

The Tips?

Post between 9 and 10 Pm, Upload Images with every post, Post on a daily basis, involve the audience, Post in your own voice, go multimedia, and Advertize your page.

I tried to see if our President is using the tips, and here’s what I found:

He uploads images with every post, Involves the audience by allowing comments, signs his personal posts with MS (his initials), and goes multimedia by uploading some videos.

I didn’t find any advertisements for his page, but I found advertisements for 11 other politicians. While the biggest majority of these politicians are probably trying to fuel their electoral campaigns, they are literally paying money to show their ads so you can like their pages, get brainwashed (hopefully), and vote for them. Some, such as Joseph Wanis aren’t known and want to be heard of. Ashraf Rifi, however, is not a politician. He is the head of the ISF, and an officer. Watching ads for his Facebook page gives me a feeling that we might see him running for one of Tripoli’s seats. He can be aspiring for the premiership too. Some politicians showed on the ads like Saleh Machnouk even have more than 100000 likes on their pages. I mean Saad Hariri has barely 50000. Nouhad Machnouk’s page says that it’s “official”. I checked twice, there is actually no other page for Machnouk. Why noting that the page’s official why there’s not even another page that’s trying to split the likes? Because that politician want to be noticed. Nicolas Sehnaoui is on the other hand showing us what he’s accomplished as a minister. Alfa and MTC’s pages can do that. But why is he doing that? So he can try to win in Ashrafieh where he lost in 2009.

Here’s the rest of the politicians:

(Notice how some politicians keep showing up several times)

And the best part is that Nouhad El Machnouk is actually Saleh El Machnouk’s father.

It’s like an electoral father-son Facebook advertizing competition.

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