Jimmy Leach: Right-wing groups tend to perform better online

Share
Related Topics

Data from Alexa can be soft and self-selective but it is useful for establishing patterns in what is an extremely complex world. Single-issue campaigns and fringe groups do perform very well online. They are organised and tend to sweat the entire membership, which means that unlike the main political parties, whose following is much more casual, a significant proportion of their supporters are highly active.

The BNP has waged a number of successful tactical campaigns online. These have been thought out; they advertise on Google and focus on search engine optimisation to make them come top of searches. But the success of their online strategy is more a symptom of a deeper malaise in mainstream politics than evidence that they will swamp us at the polls in June.

The right-wing tends to perform better online than the left, perhaps because opposition delivers more passion than government or the established parties. In all media it is easier to attack than defend. The fringe groups can tap into a large wall of sympathetic websites that help boost each other. The political mainstream's digital strategies are improving all the time, but many still lack the clear message and delivery of the sort that helped bring Barack Obama victory in the last US presidential election.

Jimmy Leach is editorial director for digital at 'The Independent' and former head of digital in the Prime Minister's Office

React Now

  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Account Manager - Email Marketing Services

£18000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company are looking for a highly or...

SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant - Manchester

£18000 - £23000 per annum + competitive: SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultan...

Recruitment Genius: Plumber

£22000 - £25900 per annum: Recruitment Genius: The Company is expanding and th...

Recruitment Genius: Corporate Account Manager

£27000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Corporate Account Manager is ...

Day In a Page

Read Next
Survivors cling on to debris after the boat they were in ran aground at Zefyros beach in Rhodes on Monday  

All my cousin wanted to do was flee the horrors of Syria, but he ended up drowning in the sea

Zena Agha
 

Hollywood: Stop trying to make Superman cool. The world needs a boy scout in blue

Matthew James
Revealed: Why Mohammed Emwazi chose the 'safe option' of fighting for Isis, rather than following his friends to al-Shabaab in Somalia

Why Mohammed Emwazi chose Isis

His friends were betrayed and killed by al-Shabaab
'The solution can never be to impassively watch on while desperate people drown'
An open letter to David Cameron: Building fortress Europe has had deadly results

Open letter to David Cameron

Building the walls of fortress Europe has had deadly results
Tory candidates' tweets not as 'spontaneous' as they seem - you don't say!

You don't say!

Tory candidates' election tweets not as 'spontaneous' as they appear
Mubi: Netflix for people who want to stop just watching trash

So what is Mubi?

Netflix for people who want to stop just watching trash all the time
The impossible job: how to follow Kevin Spacey?

The hardest job in theatre?

How to follow Kevin Spacey
Armenian genocide: To continue to deny the truth of this mass human cruelty is close to a criminal lie

Armenian genocide and the 'good Turks'

To continue to deny the truth of this mass human cruelty is close to a criminal lie
Lou Reed: The truth about the singer's upbringing beyond the biographers' and memoirists' myths

'Lou needed care, but what he got was ECT'

The truth about the singer's upbringing beyond
Migrant boat disaster: This human tragedy has been brewing for four years and EU states can't say they were not warned

This human tragedy has been brewing for years

EU states can't say they were not warned
Women's sportswear: From tackling a marathon to a jog in the park, the right kit can help

Women's sportswear

From tackling a marathon to a jog in the park, the right kit can help
Hillary Clinton's outfits will be as important as her policies in her presidential bid

Clinton's clothes

Like it or not, her outfits will be as important as her policies
NHS struggling to monitor the safety and efficacy of its services outsourced to private providers

Who's monitoring the outsourced NHS services?

A report finds that private firms are not being properly assessed for their quality of care
Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

The Tory MP said he did not want to stand again unless his party's manifesto ruled out a third runway. But he's doing so. Watch this space
How do Greek voters feel about Syriza's backtracking on its anti-austerity pledge?

How do Greeks feel about Syriza?

Five voters from different backgrounds tell us what they expect from Syriza's charismatic leader Alexis Tsipras
From Iraq to Libya and Syria: The wars that come back to haunt us

The wars that come back to haunt us

David Cameron should not escape blame for his role in conflicts that are still raging, argues Patrick Cockburn
Sam Baker and Lauren Laverne: Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

A new website is trying to declutter the internet to help busy women. Holly Williams meets the founders