If the reach of communication via Twitter is as great as it seems to be, that means a remarkable reconstruction of the public domain is in process. Until recently the public domain was the mass media and what they presented to their audiences. Now the audience has voice and is audience only in a new way. The potential consequences for the organization of politics are great. But there is the “if”. The report examines two challenges to the claim that the reach of the new media is as great as it may appear to be. One challenge is the number of individual accounts on Twitter. There seem to be too few to have the reach suggested. The other challenge is fake accounts. If the number of fake accounts is great, then the numbers for reach are a gross exaggeration. Those two challenges are examined and shown to be appropriate, but that the end result is diminishing the numbers about reach much less than would question the reconstruction of the public domain
Cite this paper
Boynton, G. , Bates, A. , Bettis, E. , Bopes, M. , Brandt, R. , Fohrman, D. , Hahn, J. , Hart, T. , Headley, C. , Kopish, J. , Maharry, R. , Matson, J. , Mohoff, K. , Mraz, R. , Palmer, M. , Pena, L. , Phillips, B. , Rhodes, A. , Rosman, H. , Sievers, C. , Tate, D. , Tyrrell, S. , Villarreal, J. , Wiese, P. and Wignall, A. (2013) The Reach of Politics via Twitter—Can That Be Real?. Open Journal of Political Science
, 91-97. doi: 10.4236/ojps.2013.33013
 Boynton, G. R. (2012a). It’s a global shoutout Mr. President. URL (last checked 13 November 2012).
 Boynton, G. R. (2012b). Voice and the Reconstruction of the Public Domain. unpublished.
 Boynton, G. R. (2012c). Really big Twitter numbers: the flow of commotion/communication. URL (last checked 20 September 2012).
 Boynton, G. R. (2012d). The reach of “This seat’s taken”. URL (last checked 6 September 2012).
 Boynton, G. R. (2012e). Political Organizations and the Magic of Retweeting. URL (last checked 17 May 2012).http://www.boyntons.us/website/new-media/analyses/pol-groups-multiplier/pol-groups-retweet.html
 Boynton, G. R. (2012f). Triggers and Surges. URL (last checked 23 March 2012).
 Cook, J. (2012). Jill Stein is the presidential candidate with the fewest fake followers on Twitter. Irregular Times, URL (last checked 27 August 2012). http://irregulartimes.com/index.php/archives/2012/08/27/jill-stein-is-the-presidential-candidate-with-the-fewest-fake-followers-on-twitter/
 Dugan, L. (2012). Twitter users who see political ads are 97% more likely to visit a campaign donation page, AllTwitter. URL (last checked 12 October 2012).
 Fitzpatrick, A. (2012). Twitter dominated online chatter about the presidential debate, Mashable. URL (last checked 4 October 2012).
 Fouhy, B. (2012). Republican convention ratings plummet from 2008, Huff Post Media. URL (last checked 5 September 2012).
 Long, M. C. (2012). Twitter CEO dispels biggest micconception about Twitter and about fake followers, AllTwitter. URL (last checked 12 October 2012).
 Pew Research Center for the People & the Press (2012). In changing news landscape, even television is vulnerable. URL (last checked 27 September 2012).
 Pew Research Center (2012). Assessing the representativeness of public opinion surveys. URL (last checked 15 May 2012).
 PoliticusUSA Jon Stewart’s ratings are now higher than all of fox news. URL (last checked 4 June 2011).
 Semiocast (2012). Twitter reaches half a billion accounts; More than 140 millions in the U.S. URL (last checked 30 July 2012).
 Sharp, A. (2012). Election night 2012, Twitter Blog. URL (last checked 6 November 2012).
 Smith, A., & Brenner, J. (2012). Twitter use 2012, Pew Research Center. URL (last checked 31 May 2012).
 Status People (2012). Find out more. URL (last checked 22 August 2012).
 Twitter Blog (2012). Dispatch from the Denver debate. URL (last checked 4 October 2012).