Despite not being able to vote, the US election has dominated UK news almost as much as our own politics does. Having finally reached polling day, it doesn’t seem likely that the coverage is going to slow down with the results and all the usual recriminations still to come. Social media has been playing an increasingly important role in the run-up coverage, sometimes satirical, sometimes highlighting bigger issues than the candidates, but always contributing to the conversation in some shape or form.
Social media means coverage that once would have remained Stateside is now spread globally and the campaign strategies are very different from just 15 years ago. Here’s some of our favourite viral, social and satirical content from the 2016 election:
Trump is well known, and lampooned, for his unusual hair style, but this 10-year-old has a career as a satirist or at least, a content creator for social media!
And along the same theme, Trump Donald
If you’ve ever felt like giving Trump’s restyle, you can literally trumpet your way to a new look for him here.
Candidate Gary Johnson decided mid-interview to pop his tongue out, as all good presidential candidates do, beautifully captured in this Vine. Especially the interviewer’s reaction!
The letter from the friends overseas (NB: contains swearing)
The viral “letter from the people of Germany” used that #beentheredonethat as a timely reminder that the people standing for election have a great deal of power and that lessons from history should not be ignored. The original post was retweeted 2,400 times, while the response to the feedback was retweeted 6,800 times.
A play on the crowdfunding phenomenon, UK comedy show The Last Leg has launched a website Bricking It For Canada allowing people to “Click for a Brick” to help build the wall and well out stripped the target needed.
Humans of New York is a popular blog and Facebook page, documenting the lives of ordinary New Yorkers with brief stories and reportage photography. The Hillary Clinton post was unusual in that it was a stock image, but the real attention grabber wasn’t the story that accompanied it, but the comments on Facebook, detailing that sexism is still alive and well in modern day America.
JK Rowling has made her disapproval of many injustices clear through her social media, especially her Twitter account. Most recently her attention has been focussed on Donald Trump, but her most observant tweet came as a response to being told to mind her own business. This was also before Obama mentioned that Trump has been locked out of his Twitter account in the final days.
This goofy fireworks face is prime Vine material, whilst we still have it!
Last but not least, there’s the Youtube favourite, the savage satire of Saturday Night Live
It may not be Spitting Image, but SNL has been savaging politicians for years, all in the name of intelligent entertainment. Alec Baldwin and Kate McKinnon are really hitting the spot with their impersonations and the final episode pre-voting has been watched over 7 million times on youtube.
(An added bonus for anyone curious, what happens to President Obama's Twitter handle )