Gary Johnson, Jill Stein start to gain momentum on Facebook

Online publication Mashable reported its analysis of Facebook data related to the 2016 presidential election on Wednesday, showing that third-party candidates Jill Stein and Gary Johnson have gained an enormous amount of user attention since the beginning of July.

From July 10 through Aug. 9, 4.3 million people have shared stories, photos or video, or mentioned Libertarian Party candidate Gary Johnson in Facebook posts, while 2.8 million have done the same for the Green Party’s Jill Stein.

On May 2, by comparison, just over 15,000 users posted about each of the two third-party candidates.

Perhaps not surprisingly, both candidates received the most total Facebook mentions on July 26 and 27, the second and third days of the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia, where each made appearances and sat for interviews.

The increased attention Johnson and Stein have gotten over the past month on the social media platform still pales to what the major party candidates receive, however, as over a combined 89 million Facebook users have posted about Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump in the same time period.

According to the analysis, approximately 100 million people have talked about the 2016 election on Facebook, which represents just under 50 percent of all users.

The third-party contenders may have received a spike in Facebook publicity on Wednesday evening, though, as both attended public events broadcast on CNN and Periscope, respectively, with Jill Stein interviewed in a town-hall style meeting in New York and Gary Johnson speaking and taking questions from the audience in Miami.

The latest four-way national polls show Gary Johnson holding steady in the high single-digits, currently averaging 8.4 percent, while Stein only manages 3.1 percent against Clinton’s 43.1 and Trump’s 37.1.

Recent state polls also show Johnson receiving double-digit support in Colorado, Iowa, Indiana, Virginia and Maine.

Facebook data also points to where the Libertarian and Green Party candidates are most popular geographically — with Johnson earning three times as many mentions as Stein in Mississippi, Oklahoma, New Mexico and Utah, while the latter does best in California, Oregon, New York and Vermont.

 

[Mashable] [RealClear Politics] [Photo courtesy Gage Skidmore/cc/flickr via commondreams.org]