Author Affiliation, Ana.
Enhancing Political Participation in Jamaica: The Use of Facebook to ‘Cure’ the Problem of Political Talk Among the Jamaican Youth
Date of Publication
Youth participation through political talk appears to be shifting to the online public sphere in many parts of the world. Many attribute this shift to online social networks such as Facebook. Emerging research seem to suggest that this may be a cure for the problem of political apathy among the youth. This study explores such a possibility in Jamaica. In all, 752 youth ages 15 to 24 were surveyed to ascertain whether Facebook encourages political talk among this age cohort, and what if any are the primary factors that discourage this practice. The findings suggest that (a) Facebook is an extension of offline political talk among the civically engaged and politically charged youth of Jamaica; (b) Facebook does not substantively encourage political talk among the politically apathetic Jamaican youth; and (c) fear of political victimization is the primary factor that discourages many Jamaican youth to engage in political talk on Facebook.....