“Strategic discretion is advised”

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After the presidential election 2017, the way politicians convey their words has dramatically changed. Unsurprisingly, president Donald Trump is at the front line, leading such a phenomenon. In the past, it has been deemed a social norm for politicians to carefully use or cite certain radical words that could mislead audiences. However, Trump totally broke the shared rule among politicians, and it seems many of his fellow officers are following his “new-fashioned way” of delivering words. Then, will such a radical way of delivering words help their work? Daft and Lengel (1983) says “no.”

The media richness theory by Daft and Lengel notes that a form of technology-mediated communication should be less effective and efficient when compared to face-to-face communications. The capacity in processing information varies upon a type of medium, and recent social media seems to be a poor option when it comes to managing impressions. For example, Twitter only allows 140 character counts, and such a limitation works as a gigantic obstacle in conveying meaningful messages.

Politicians are people who should carefully and consistently manage their impressions since they represent the nation’s personality. In addition, their inadvertently used words could result in an anxiety among citizens. Therefore, discretion is needed in expressing their thoughts. Otherwise, the uncertainty caused by inadvertent messages could drive people into a panic and polarize the public opinions in negative ways.

According to Walther (2007), there are definitely ways the elected politicians could strategically use social media in managing their impressions. One such a way comprises the “hyperpersonal communication.” By selectively and strategically utilizing the characteristics of social media, they might be able to successfully “communicate” with their citizens.

Look how silly and radical words used for a tweet, which might have been used “maybe” to imply some seriousness, have made the great social media platform, Twitter, an information miser. “Strategic discretion is advised.”



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