The Digital Political Communication of South Korean Politicians

Heike Hermanns

Abstract


The internet and social media have been credited with the potential to reinvigorate democracy by offering new avenues of political participation and communication between citi-zens and politicians. The results of empirical studies, however, call for caution, as many politi-cians refrain from fully exploring the interactive potential of new media. This case study focus-es on the web presence of Korean parliamentarians, using basic statistical analyses to explore the use of ICT as a means of political communication. It finds that Korean parliamentarians are less active online, treating ICT mainly as another channel for information distribution. It is thus concluded that ICT is not revolutionizing politics but reinforcing existing patterns of communi-cation that leave a gap between citizens and representatives. This paper was previously submit-ted to CeDem Asia 2016. The literature review and the methodology section have been expand-ed, and additional statistical data as well as further findings on Twitter were added.

Keywords


politicians’ digital presence, political communication, direct democracy, South Korea, National Assembly

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