English title: Party profiles on the web: an analysis of the logfiles of non-partisan interactive political internet sites in the 2003 and 2004 election campaigns in Belgium

Author(s): Marc Hooghe - Wouter Teepe -

Language: English

Type: Journal article

Year: 2007

Abstract

During recent election campaigns non-partisan party profile websites (PPWs) have become hugely popular in various countries with multiparty systems, sometimes even attracting 25 percent of all voters. On these interactive websites, PPW users respond to policy questions, and their answers are used to calculate the distance between their own preferences and party agendas, resulting in an individualized `party profile'. PPWs can be seen as one of the few innovations in election campaigning that fully exploit the internet's interactive opportunities. The analysis in this article of the log files of 2003 and 2004 Belgian PPWs demonstrate that PPW users tend to be highly educated, male and young. Party and policy preferences of late PPW users (the final days before the elections) are not more crystallized than those of early PPW users (40 days before the elections). The article concludes with speculation on what this finding might reveal about campaign dynamics.

Volume: 9

Issue: 6

From page no: 965

To page no: 985

Refereed: Yes

DOI: 10.1177/1461444807082726

Journal: New Media and Society

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