The Curious Case of Donald Trump and Latinos in Social Media

August 17, 2015
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Written by Vianessa Castaños

The concept of ‘social media’ is fairly new, and like any new and exciting mode of communication, its primary function has been to entertain and share stories, images and news amongst friends, colleagues and even strangers. Sure we hear of ‘social media campaigns’ on behalf of brands, but it’s rare for us to think of sites like Twitter, Facebook and Reddit as tools for mass unification and social change. But if you’ve ever doubted the effectiveness of social media in uniting people in support of a singular idea, then I point you to the latest and greatest social upheaval to date: #DumpTrump.

If perhaps you’ve fallen into a time warp or ventured into a media black hole, THIS is what started the whole Trump debacle. Sometimes its best to keep your sweeping generalizations about an entire culture of people away from a presidential announcement (or any other public platform for that matter).

Soon after his speech a slew of companies, starting with Univision, began disassociating themselves from Donald Trump due to the massive uproar on social media. One of the most prominent campaigns was a MoveOn.org petition to get Macy’s to stop carrying Donald Trump products which garnered 734,000 signatures. According to CNN Money, the campaign, which was created by Angelo Carusone in November of 2012, gained 25,000 signatures in just one day since the Trump’s faux pas and an average of 590 new signatures were coming in per hour.

All of this brings us to the larger point: just how active are Latinos in social media? The Pew Research Center’s Internet Project shared that 80 percent of U.S. Hispanic adults use social media, compared to 72 percent for the country overall. According that same report, 18 percent of Latinos online are Twitter users, and on Facebook, Latinos are also using the social media platform at a higher rate than their counterparts, with 54.2 percent of Latinos online regularly using Facebook, just above non-Latino blacks at 47.7 percent and non-Latino whites at 43 percent, according to marketing company Big Research.  Seeing just how active Latinos are across all these social media platforms it’s easy to see how the #DumpTrump movement picked up steam in such a short time frame thus putting the pressure on companies to comply or risk losing support and money from a key demographic.

And THAT is the power of Latinos in social media.

About the Author: Vianessa is a YouTube content producer, freelance writer and professional actress . She’s been a contributor to numerous blogs and has worked on countless influencer campaigns over the past several years. Always eager to make others laugh, when she’s not on set or writing, she can be found on Twitter or Instagram.

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