Considering they are losing to a silent character maybe the chatterboxes could learn a lesson.
In the ceaseless runup to the 2020 presidential election, we have all tired already of the nattering know-it-alls who have been prattling in perpetuity about how they will be the best choice for the nation. Whether it is making bold declarations about what they will do their first day in office — seemingly ignorant of Congressional involvement — to all of the promised giveaways, which translate to them claiming to be ‘’investing’’ in my future while confiscating money from me.
To say that early-onset electoral fatigue may be at play is not an exaggeration. The most notable aspect of the wide-open Democrat field is how no one candidate has come forward and held the attention of voters. All we hear about is how Kamala has faded, Biden is slidin’, and even presumptive favorite Elizabeth Warren is failing to gain traction. And now comes a piece of data that seems illustrative of the mounting apathy.
On the Disney+ streaming service the new program from the Star Wars universe, ‘’The Mandalorian’’ has been a hit, and the anthropomorphic character dubbed Baby Yoda has been extremely popular. One surprising result has been that Disney, usually masterful at licensing and branding, has not made any toys to go with the character. The yearning by fans online is notable.
While not too surprising social media would latch on to a cultural item, what is a bit of an eye-opener is that there is a measurable gulf between the interactions online of this character and those of the Democrats running for office. Axios measured the number of interactions stories received and found that Baby Yoda logged twice as many on social media that the closest Democrat candidate, Bernie Sanders.
Things look only slightly better when measuring what are ‘’raw interactions’’, where Yoda ends up trailing Biden, Sanders, and Warren. This is not entirely good news, however, since it measures stories from November 12, where the Star Wars character logged far fewer news stories than the candidates. It would be listed in the 10th position as far as the amount of news coverage, so the reaction-rate is reflective of far more engagement with readers.
Of particular embarrassment are the reactions to Michael Bloomberg and Deval Patrick. Yoda manages to eclipse both of the new entrants to the Democrat race in terms of reactions, and this is despite both having vastly more favorable coverage. Since announcing the same weekend that ‘’Mandalorian’’ debuted Bloomberg was written about over 7,600 times, and Patrick received about 4,000 stories. Yoda was covered with only 1,368 articles by comparison, but had nearly ten times the reaction.
While hardly a political measurement this does go far to explain the lack of impact felt from the media. While force-feeding the various candidates onto the public the eyes and the interest by those who are supposed to be influenced are looking elsewhere. Rather revealing that when the effort is to get people talking about prominent figures the one generating the biggest reaction is the one who is actually silent.
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