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Keywords:

  • Credibility;
  • social network sites;
  • Facebook;
  • election campaigns;
  • 2008 election

Abstract

Scholars have confirmed that political candidates are increasingly turning to social network sites (SNS) to persuade voters to vote for them, and that these sites have become prominent sources of political information. But a fundamental question arises about the sustainability of social networks as a campaign tool: How much do users trust the information they find there? This study employed an online survey to examine the degree to which politically interested online users view SNS as credible. SNS were ranked the least credible among the nine traditional and online sources examined. Reliance on social networks proved the strongest predictor of SNS credibility.