Posted by Sarah Ryan
If you enjoy exploring Boston and attending events around the city, it’s likely that you’ve been in the presence of Mayor Menino. He’s always around town, going to shows and meeting local residents. This past weekend he attended the Boston Calling music festival and met members of the band, Local Natives.
Five terms and twenty years later, the longest serving Mayor of Boston announced he would not be running for a sixth term. This has opened the door for a plethora of candidates and quite a different race than this city is used to seeing.
Mayor Menino knew his audience well, but who are they? According to the 2013 Boston Economy Report Boston is diverse, young and growing. The report stated that 35% of Boston’s population falls between the ages of 20-34. If the hopeful candidates don’t know where to find their voters, Pew Internet can give the candidates a bit of insight: 89% of Internet users engage in social networking, “the percentage of internet users who are on Twitter has more than doubled since November 2010, currently standing at 18%. Internet users ages 18-29 are the most likely to use Twitter.”
Apparently, the Mayoral candidates needed a “How-to-Tweet” Seminar. If you hadn’t been following the hopefuls earlier, you didn’t miss out on much. Everywhere they went they had a “great time,” literally. No personality, no sass – nothing to work with. Thankfully, the situation has improved. We all owe a big thank you to Jason Schwartz for alerting the candidates that their Twitter feeds were about as thought-provoking as watching paint dry.
Whether you’re running for Mayor or applying for an internship — expressing your opinions and displaying your personality on social media is always a difficult task. I like to think of Twitter as a social media puzzle. How could I be witty, engaging and able to stand by my tweet if it appeared in the New York Times all in under 140 characters?
This isn’t an easy task for the candidates, but since Twitter users represent such a large demographic of voters, it’s an aspect of the campaign that they should definitely take notice to. Bostonians are loud and proud. We boo A-rod, brave the winter season each year and never back down from obstacles. We need a Mayor that complements our wicked personality.
Do you follow any of the Mayoral candidates? Who is your favorite?