Data integration: Electoral influence

Jeff Cheong
Tribal DDB

Data visualisation that journalised the political conversations in social media inspired greater interest in the Singapore General Election, leading to a big change in government

Singapore's 11th General Election was held on May 7, 2011. It was the most fiercely contested election since independence in 1965. The ruling People's Action Party (PAP) was returned to power with 60.1% of ballots cast. This number was the lowest ever and compared to 66.6% in 2006 and 75.3% in 2001. The opposition Workers' Party won a group-candidate constituency with six elected opposition members, making it the largest representation in Parliament history.

One significant change before the campaigning started was the relaxed ruling on internet advertising for the general election. Political parties and candidates now had a previously prohibited repertoire of new media channels to engage the public. This included the use of podcasts, video-casts, Twitter, Facebook, blogs, email, photo-sharing platforms and mobile technology such as MMS and SMS. Individual Singaporeans could now participate in internet election advertising without declaring their personal details.