WYFF News 4 to cover presidential election live from Clemson’s Social Media Listening Center
CLEMSON — WYFF News 4, the top ranked station in South Carolina’s largest media market, will broadcast live from the Clemson University campus on Election Day (Nov. 8). Clemson students will work in the Social Media Listening Center (SMLC) in partnership with WYFF to monitor social media conversations surrounding the presidential election as it happens on election night.
As one of the most anticipated events of the year, students working in Clemson’s SMLC will host Patrick Hussion and the WYFF News 4 crew to cover the social media angle of one of the most influential presidential elections of the modern era.
“These students have an in-depth understanding of the social media monitoring software and are prepared for the challenge to analyze social media chatter as it happens live on Election Day,” said Hussion. “Throughout the semester, we have been shining a spotlight on the national conversation, and we are very excited to bring everything together as part of WYFF News 4’s Commitment 2016 coverage.”
Thirteen communication students are working alongside professor Joseph Mazer in the SMLC. Mazer, the director of the SMLC and associate chair of the communication department, is leading the team of students in his fall semester senior capstone seminar.
Clemson students use Salesforce Marketing Cloud’s Radian6 software to listen, measure and engage in more than 650 million sources of social media conversations across the Web. They are capturing publicly available data from Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, blogs, online communities and mainstream news outlets. Radian6 sifts through this stream of data and makes it possible to show such information as sentiment, share of voice, trending topics, geo-location metrics and much more.
“The students have worked extremely hard this semester analyzing a multitude of topics,” Mazer said. “This will not only be an incredible experience for the students, but as millennials, they will also provide viewers with unique insight into the presidential election.”
Students will analyze the election in real time and assess the social media chatter from the presidential candidates themselves as well as the reactions of the general public. Students will pay most attention to Twitter, as Twitter leads the social platform used throughout the entire campaign cycle for the candidates’ and for the public.
“We anticipate frequent tweets about major swing states,” said senior Fiona Sykes. “The popular political website Five Thirty Eight marks Florida as having a 19.5 percent chance of tipping the election. As we prepare for the live broadcast, we expect to see a lot of chatter about uncertain states like Florida and their 29 coveted electoral votes.”
In addition to the live coverage on Nov. 8, Clemson communication students are publishing posts each week regarding their experience and findings on Clemson Blogs.
The Social Media Listening Center is housed within the College of Behavioral, Social and Health Sciences and is open to all areas of the university.