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‘Tweeting to Power’ Analyzes the Effects of Social Media on Politics

BOCA RATON, Fla. (February 5, 2014) – “Tweeting to Power,” a new book coauthored by Kevin Wagner, assistant professor of political science in Florida Atlantic University’s Department of Political Science, and Jason Gainous of the University of Louisville, was recently released by Oxford University Press. The authors provide an analysis of the effect of online social media on how people come to learn, understand and engage in politics.

“With the explosive growth of social media, you cannot really understand politics anymore without it,” said Wagner. “This book provides a foundation for understanding how and why these changes are happening, and what it means for our government and our nation.”

Beginning with a theoretical foundation grounded in political, communications and psychology literature, “Tweeting to Power” examines how platforms such as Facebook and Twitter offer the opportunity for a new information flow that is no longer being structured and limited by the popular media.  The book includes trends in a dataset comprising tweets from members of Congress during the 2010 Presidential campaign.

Using an impressive array of qualitative and quantitative data, Gainous and Wagner systematically track how Twitter and Facebook are influencing Congress, political parties and the American public. By situating their evidence in long-standing theoretical debates, Gainous and Wagner tackle more fundamental questions about the functioning of American democracy in the age of the internet. 

For more information about the book, visit the Oxford University Press website at, or email Kevin Wagner at


Florida Atlantic University, established in 1961, officially opened its doors in 1964 as the fifth public university in Florida. Today, the University, with an annual economic impact of $6.3 billion, serves more than 30,000 undergraduate and graduate students at sites throughout its six-county service region in southeast Florida. FAU’s world-class teaching and research faculty serves students through 10 colleges: the Dorothy F. Schmidt College of Arts and Letters, the College of Business, the College for Design and Social Inquiry, the College of Education, the College of Engineering and Computer Science, the Graduate College, the Harriet L. Wilkes Honors College, the Charles E. Schmidt College of Medicine, the Christine E. Lynn College of Nursing and the Charles E. Schmidt College of Science. FAU is ranked as a High Research Activity institution by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. The University is placing special focus on the rapid development of three signature themes – marine and coastal issues, biotechnology and contemporary societal challenges – which provide opportunities for faculty and students to build upon FAU’s existing strengths in research and scholarship. For more information, visit

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