November 7, 2012 | News, Press Releases

Election 2012: America’s First Social Election

Contact:  Betsy Barrett, 202-803-5783 x102

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Tonight, The Internet Association released a statement from The IA President and CEO Michael Beckerman regarding the unprecedented online voter engagement driven by Internet freedom during this 2012 election:

“The Internet Association offers its congratulations to President Obama on his reelection tonight, the winner of America’s first social election.

“2012 is America’s first social election.  The online voter engagement driven by the amazing innovative design of the Internet is unprecedented. It has been the first National campaign conducted in the real time social media environment of instant reaction and interaction from voters across the country. Consider that in 2008, 5.4 million Facebook users clicked the “I voted” button; that number grew to 12 million in 2010, and today, on Election Day 2012, the number has surged even higher.    Furthermore, in 2008, 1.8 million tweets were sent on Election Day.  Today, 1.8 million tweets are sent every six minutes.  This evening, with 20 million tweets, Election Day 2012 just became the most tweeted about event in US political history.

“Two thirds of voting age Americans used Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and many other social media for civil and political activity.  From Facebook ‘likes’ to trending Google search terms to the way memes spread, the Internet and social media have been integral components of campaigns and candidates engaging voters this year.

“In 2008, Facebook, Twitter and social media were in its infancy.  Today, not only is the Internet growing the economy, creating jobs and increasing American competiveness at an unparalleled growth rate, it is driving the political spectrum.  In  the past five years,  the Internet economy represented a full 15 percent of U.S. GDP growth , and because of this, it is changing the focus of policy.  This year, both campaigns added Internet freedom to their platforms.  In four short years, social media platforms became central to the United States Presidential election and our democratic process.

“The Internet is one of the greatest engines for economic growth and prosperity the world has ever known.  Its explosive growth, innovation and vitality are the direct result of its free, open and decentralized architecture.  Both Democrats and Republicans agree that the unique nature of the Internet has changed campaigns and elections forever.  We must guard this growth for the future of voting and the freedom of this great land.”

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Calling to End New York AG’s Reckless Fishing Expedition Targeting Airbnb

“The New York Attorney General’s government-sponsored fishing expedition targeting Airbnb is unwarranted, unjust, and is unfairly harming ordinary New Yorkers. Airbnb generates positive economic returns for cities around the world, adds millions of dollars to local economies, and brings more people to New York. Airbnb should be welcomed by business and government leaders hungry for a boost in local tourism, not pushed out by politicians seeking to protect incumbents and special interests.”

The Internet Association and Congresswoman Wasserman Schultz Highlight Internet Innovation Empowering South Florida Small Businesses

Today, The Internet Association stopped in Hollywood, Florida for a small business crawl to highlight local entrepreneurs who are using the Internet in innovative ways to grow their businesses, create jobs, and attract new customers. The walking tour included stops at four unique businesses: Hollywood Antique Center, Presence Community Acupuncture, Hispanic Unity of Florida, and Gino’s Market.

INTERNET ASSOCIATION URGES SENATE TO BRING STRONG PATENT LEGISLATION TO THE FLOOR

“The Internet Association continues to work with the Senate Judiciary Committee to bring strong patent legislation to the floor. We agree with Chairman Leahy that it is not enough simply to get any bill through the Committee. To be effective, legislation must target the mechanisms that patent trolls use to skew the odds in their favor and to shield themselves from responsibility for misuse of our patent system. At a minimum, strong fee shifting and discovery provisions must be part of that package.”

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“The New York Attorney General’s government-sponsored fishing expedition targeting Airbnb is unwarranted, unjust, and is unfairly harming ordinary New Yorkers. Airbnb generates positive economic returns for cities around the world, adds millions of dollars to local economies, and brings more people to New York. Airbnb should be welcomed by business and government leaders hungry for a boost in local tourism, not pushed out by politicians seeking to protect incumbents and special interests.”

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