Social Media Penetration, Party Politics and Elections in Tanzania: Emerging Practices and Challenges

Tanzania has witnessed an increased use of social media in political party campaigning over the last decade. Use of social media was nonetheless curtailed by a changing techno-political framework regulated by acts relating to cybersecurity and statistics. This study was guided by two hypotheses: firstly, that despite restrictive cybersecurity laws, social media in recent years has been effectively institutionalised as a new civic cyberspace for political party campaigns during elections. Secondly, increasing use of social media in elections has had a transformative effect on the way party structure was organised to conduct political mobilisation, promote party ideology and both inter- and intra-party interaction, and for fundraising. The study interviewed party members and leaders from five political parties which participated in the 2015 and 2020 general elections and concluded that social media had a transformative effect on core political party campaign activities.

File Type: pdf
Categories: Journal of African Elections
Tags: cybersecurity laws, election campaigns, political parties, social media
journal of african elections vol20 number 1 transparent democratic governance in africa