In an email response, Joe Hallett, senior editor of The Dispatch, noted the one story the paper has run (linked above) about campaigns and social media. The paper does “routinely mention” in articles and blog posts the ways in which campaigns communicate message to their supporters, and in some instances those mentions have generated stories, he added. And The Dispatch is planning to dig deeper on this issue in an upcoming story.

“I do know that both presidential campaigns have very robust social media operations—bigger and better focused than ever before,” Hallett wrote.

These replies suggest that, though the coverage doesn’t yet show it, Buckeye State journalists are well aware of the changing ways in which campaigns are being conducted. To grab onto that shifting story—and to help voters understand the whole picture, as social media political strategies will continue to evolve and multiply—may mean dealing with some hard decisions about how to use limited resources, and passing on some traditional coverage events like all those campaign visits.

For sure, interest is there. Tom Troy, political reporter for The Blade, sent this note back when asked about the lack of deeper coverage of the social campaign: “Good question, maybe I should look into it.”


T.C. Brown covered government and politics in the Ohio Statehouse Bureau for The Plain Dealer of Cleveland for more than 17 years, and he has also written for other local, state and national publications. Brown is a founding partner in Webface, a social media communication company.