Effect of Political Advertising – Breathing in and Breathing out

24 May

Voting is compulsory for every Australian resident. How do you make your ‘respectful’ decisions? Are the so-called ‘democratic elections’ really ‘for the people and by the people’?  In this blog, I will focus on the different modes of publishing of advertising for the elections and their changing effects due to various publishing.

During the elections in present-day society, there are two main streams of advertising publishing: print-out and online version. Print-out advertisings, such as pamphlets, brochures, postcards, letters etc., are usually delivered to residents’ living place via mail or distributed on streets. Regarding the online version, it often transforms the static print-out advertising into a more interactive interface, such as animation or graphic design etc., but definitely convey the same information. The main differences between the two streams are updatability and timeliness. In the online arena, advertisers can update their content at any time and audiences can grab new information in time merely by clicking the refresh button in a browser. By contrast, the print-out version cannot be revised once it has been published. People may critique the credibility level of the breathing-out (distribution) information as opposed to the potential impact on the voters’ decisions. It is generally because the public is not 100% sure about the source the advertising groups “breathing in”(aggregation). People tend to contend that the amount of profit the advertisers are able to get depending on how brilliant the presentation of the advertising of a candidate could be rather than the truth of the advertising content.

However, the question is why political parties spend billions of dollars promoting themselves through different modes of publishing advertisements with a definite recognition of the problem mentioned above.  The reason is that all parties try their best in various modes of advertising publishing so as to influence the swinging voters who have less knowledge about political campaign and depend on the advertising to make their final decisions (Errington & Miragliotta, 2007).

Therefore, the political advertisings do have an effect on voters, particularly swinging voters. Also, the extent of impact varies from one publishing mode to the other. The relationship between the publisher and audiences determines the “cause and effect” on how the public interact with the elections.


Errington, W & Miragliotta, N 2007, Media & Politics: An Introduction, Oxford University Press, UK, p.100 – p.110



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