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[liberationtech] UC Berkeley Seminar: Social Media and the Political Right in India: An analysis of Narendra Modi's Tweeting

Yosem Companys companys at
Tue Dec 16 21:22:09 PST 2014

South Hall 107, Fridays 3-5 pm
Open to the public. Everyone interested is welcome!

Dec 19: Special session co-sponsored with the Institute for South Asian
    Joyojeet Pal, School of Information, University of Michigan:
    Social Media and the Political Right in India: An analysis of
Narendra Modi's Tweeting.
     Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi has over 8.2 million followers
on Twitter and over 25 million "likes" on Facebook, making him among the
most followed politicians on social media. With a mix of ‘feel good’
messages, shout-outs to other celebrities, well-timed ritualized
responses, as well as a careful strategy of ‘followbacks’ for a small
selection of his most active followers, Modi has been able to grow his
following dramatically since 2013. Twitter helps Modi circumvent the
mainstream media and directly reach a significant constituency of
listeners. At the same time, social media is also central to his broader
campaign of public image shaping as a technology-savvy leader who
represents pan-Indian aspirations of modernity, away from Modi's own
past image in the popular media as a central political figure in some of
the worst communal riots in India.
     Joyojeet Pal, MIMS '04, is Assistant Professor in the School of
Information, University of Michigan. His research is on technology and
development in the Global South. His recent work has focused on the use
accessible technology by people with disabilities in low- and
middle-income countries, and on the role of social media in political
brand building in India. More at

The Seminar will resume in the Spring semester on January 23, 2015.

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