Put it under a microscope and watch it grow. What is the view? Does the single-celled organism multiply and divide? Does it become a network we can use to communicate the politics we often despise. Can we watch it from another height? Wait ten years and see if it has become more. Will a survey help? Can we ask neutrons and protons what party they voted for? Did they use social media inside their atomic core?
We often try and examine our literature in order to examine the “bigger picture”. We often forget the
Doppler effect when we explore. The color of the frequency that approaches us is blue. As the wavelength slows it reddens in hue. And the wavelength slooooows down. We can examine a super nova after it has passed. We are not able to measure it before its blast.
Politics in social media is much the same. We will not be able to understand the effect it has had until decades have come and gone. What we need is to look inside. What did you feel in 2008? Did you feel the world of politics had changed? Did you feel the momentum of which opinion was shaped? What were your emotions on election day? Did it feel differently than before? Win or lose I felt things would never be the same as I cried for joy.
I’m not sure how I was pulled so strongly into the race. Maybe it was my health. Maybe it was the economy. Maybe it was the two wars. Maybe it was the sense of change that might come. I look at all the studies I have read about social media and what it might have done and I know one thing. I was engaged. Not through Facebook, Twitter or blogging but through my heart. That feeling can never be measured, bottled or caged.