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How Facebook Users make use of Communication Strategies Pronounced by Rhetoricians since its Origin

Rhetorical Analysis

Technological advancement has influenced the patterns of interaction as well as communication in society. Many individuals use the internet to get and share information on an array of issues; political, economic, and social (Cyphert, 2010). Additionally, many individuals are familiar with social media as a platform to interact or rather communicate with others. Social media enables people to distribute knowledge, ideas, and views among users via electronic media like Facebook. On the political part, social media greatly influences patterns of political interaction. The implication is that politicians will interact and communicate with their voters. For instance, through the theory of rhetoric, politicians use social media to acquire public support during election periods. Besides, through social media, politicians can share their vision and their views on what they want to achieve when they are elected to office.

Social media plays a critical role in contemporary society. However, one of the most controversial questions with regard to the role of social media is whether it is a positive or a negative role. For example, social media sites like Twitter and Facebook improve advertisement opportunities by enabling organizations to reach out to their potential clients (Cyphert, 2010). Conversely, such social media sites can encourage negative practices such as cyber bullying, destruction of relationships, and leaking of confidential information. Pertaining to the discussion of rhetoric on Facebook, it is often challenging to determine the nature of the implications of social media.

Rhetoric refers to the art of using language for the purposes of successfully convincing, persuading, and affecting other people. Many times, rhetoric is usually overlooked when using social media platforms such as Facebook (Cyphert, 2010). Nonetheless, it is important to note that the rhetoric involved in convincing others through social media sites like Facebook cannot be evaluated in similar terms as those used in nonviolent and daily life argumentation. For example, if a Facebook user intends to catch attention, his or her status has to be short, precise, and extremely interesting. As such, it can be concluded that the rhetoric on Facebook is often not as detailed, elegant, or comprehensive as that used in a face-to-face context. Still, rhetoric can more effectively be made use of in the social media platform than it is currently done. Social media has numerous rhetorical benefits. To begin with, it offers an opportunity to build a person’s ethos. This, however, does not imply simply bragging about your achievements through egocentric statuses (Cyphert, 2010). Essentially, ethos can be created effectively by building complementary but unassuming statuses and profiles that seek to impact society positively. At times, social media brings about a negative image of its users since they fail to monitor the kind and nature of the material they post online.

Individuals can also take advantage of pathos, a rhetoric element, through social media sites such as Facebook. For instance, numerous charitable campaigns are often initiated through Facebook by use of emotional persuasion, for purposes of gathering more support. Such campaigns usually draw on people’s personal experiences with the intent, empathy, and sympathy to convince Facebook users to consider joining such campaigns and spread awareness using updating their statuses. Such campaigns, however, can potentially lose their reliability if Facebook users fail to establish an effective ethos. Although rhetoric is constantly adapting as methods of communication evolve in contemporary society, it is usually difficult to recognize rhetoric in various new mediums of contract (Cyphert, 2010). It has been established that within social media sites such as Facebook, rhetoric is usually incorrectly utilized or underutilized. Similarly, if individuals learn to take advantage of rhetoric on social media platforms such as Facebook, then they will easily build their credibility by creating ethos, which eventually creates a substantial impact. What is more, social media users will gain the ability to take advantage of the use of pathos to gain support for initiatives they believe in. In such a way, social media platforms, Facebook, in this case, will turn out to be platforms on which individuals develop influential positions in their societies, but if and only if they use rhetoric effectively. This essay seeks to explore the relationship between Facebook and rhetoric theory. The essay looks into the presence of rhetoric in communication, on social media sites, with a specific focus on Facebook. In particular, the paper seeks to demonstrate how Facebook users make use of communication strategies pronounced by rhetoricians since its origin. The profound use of rhetorical figures such as pathos, logos, and ethos, antedates the presence of the humanistic element in network communication, bestowing it with substantial creativity (Cyphert, 2010). These elements, together with the resources offered by emergent technology, serve to shape the typical persuasive strength of Facebook users, as a result of collective intelligence. Within a short span of time, an all-communication community is established, a society in which information flows mainly through social media platforms, linking several people across the world. Online social networks prevail worldwide, playing a critical role in users’ social, personal, and work life.

The use of social media has dramatically transformed the way campaigns are managed and how people interact and communicate with their elected leaders. Further, the use of social media has enabled elected leaders, and candidates for public office to become accessible and accountable to the electorates. Indeed, social media (Cyphert, 2010). Facebook, has greatly evolved over the decades. It is no longer a platform to connect and communicate with friends and family. It has rather become a platform for networking, advertising, job seeking, political campaigns, selling of manifestos, entertainment, and academic research among others. People share information through Facebook. Factual and persuasive information, therefore, is crucial and should be part of social media. The absence of facts in social media may lead to war, confusion, conflict, and mistrust.

Through social media, we come to know of heroes and great people who have done charitable work. Furthermore, we come to get some great motivational talks. Some of these talks use rhetoric; by applying ethos, logos, pathos, and pathos. For instance. Through social media sites such as Facebook, people get information that encourages them to live healthy lives. Some posts say that many citizens of America are dead or rather dying, and millions are infected. The purpose of these posts or speeches is to create awareness by giving statistics on the increasing infection of the diseases. Some people through the Facebook platform talk about the risks in the protection from the disease. Therefore, the audience is armed with the understanding of the seriousness of the danger awaiting when protection from the disease is not regarded seriously.

Many Facebook users are applying a symbol of the three appeals that include” logos, pathos as well as ethos.  First, they authenticate themselves, and their credibility which is the ethos by demonstrating early in the talking about issues that affect our society. Indeed, some make her announcement more reachable by sharing to inspire some people (Cyphert, 2010). They further make an appeal to Pathos, or rather emotions of the audience through her referencing of a tragic event as well as a famous quote, which further appeals to emotions. Some end their speech with a wealth of emotion, asserting their love for their loving family as well as her future hope and she requests God to bless her audience. Through Facebook, some people use their speech to create awareness and make people make them fully understand what she said and with their full attention on the address.

One of the ways the use of Facebook, through the theory of rhetoric, has changed the political landscape is by allowing the politician to have direct contact with the voters by speaking directly to them in real-time with little or no cost. During the interaction, the politician can communicate his vision and development agenda. Moreover, most constitutions call for public participation before any development project can be undertaken. Therefore, politicians will use the platform of social media to engage the public and seek their opinions regarding the development agendas. In this sense, the use of social media had kept people aware and engaged as opposed to the times when there was no use of the internet and when public participation was costly and required a large amount of time (Foss, 201. What is more, it has become relatively common for political operations to produce advertisements and publish them with no charge on Facebook rather than paying for time on television and radio. Through, Twitter and Facebook, voters and activists can easily share information like campaign events. Therefore, the campaign team will have information in real-time.

Also, Facebook has been used as a platform to fundraise money for political campaigns. The campaign team will get an opportunity to invite their followers about the fundraising with full details about the event including the location in real-time and at no cost. Also, the followers may be asked to give their contributions through online payment methods. Hence, this has seen many politicians get contributions from friends and the population who would not have had the opportunity to attend the fundraising in person (Cyphert, 2010). Studies reveal that online payment platforms have allowed getting a lot of money in which they use in campaigns. However, a section of experts has blamed on the use of huge funds in campaigns since it influences bad leadership. Similarly, the use of cash in politics has enabled leaders to reach out to voters.

Furthermore, social media platforms such as Facebook has enabled politicians to reply to some accusation and allegations regarding their conduct ((Cyphert, 2010). Some politicians have been accused of committing or having previously committed conduct that is not pleasant to the electorates; thus social media will give the politician an opportunity to clear the air and explain his side of the story. For instance, a politician may be accused of having disrespected a particular group of people or region. Moreover, the politician will also get an opportunity to get feedback from the voters or constituents. It is important to know what the electorates feel about the movements and actions of a politician. Getting feedback on criticism and complaints will make the candidate a better public official. More importantly, the politician should welcome the feedback from the public regardless of whether it is negative or positive (Cyphert, 2010). What is more, Facebook allowed the people to easily join hands together to petition the administration as well as their elected officials, putting more pressure against the power of influential lobbyists together with special interest groups. The power of social media has in many cases managed to tame the individual interest of powerful politicians and citizens. Leaders with scandals such as corruption issues have been asked to step aside through mass exposure through social media (Yousif and Alsamydai 86). Some powerful leaders have been asked to step aside when they are accused of either incompetence or bad governance. The implication is that the social media platforms such as Twitter and Facebook help keep leaders in check because the voice of the many is on the social media platform. Indeed, social media gives citizens an opportunity to air their grievances and talk about what is happening around them.

Another way in which the use of Facebook has changed the political landscape s is the total speed at which information, poll results, as well as rumors, are shared and circulated. While during the days of pre-internet days, individuals had to wait for news from newspapers and televisions. The implication is that one will be able to get the last and most trendy news (Foss, 2017). The ease of interaction as well as communication is another way social media platform transforms the political landscape. This is because many candidates have Facebook accounts, blog accounts, and websites to communicate with their supporters and get their reactions. Also, the politician will accept criticism, views, and advice from electorates and will respond directly. According to (Foss, (2017), two-way communication is implemented in social media initiatives, whereas in other media like television, and newspapers; politician only communicates with their prospective electorates through single-way communication (91).

Overall, through the use of social media, organizations responsible for conducting polls to gauge the views of the electorates concerning a politician or their agenda can do so with ease and at no cost. Political polls are critical in the election process (Cyphert, 2010). Therefore, the result of the poll may be will be fast shared through social media, which will reshape the perception of the electorates reading the politician and their agenda. Notably, polls have a huge influence on elections. They predict who is likely to win. While some may be flawed, they generally predict the candidate who is likely to win an election.

In summary, the human social sphere has significantly transformed in recent decades. The use of the internet has played a gold star role in this transformation. In particular, social media is currently a serious element in political campaigns, and in the manner, in which voters think about agendas. Through the use of social media, candidates, as well as their supporters, continually post their views and opinions on Facebook pages.


Cyphert, D. (2010). The rhetorical analysis of business speech: Unresolved questions. The Journal of Business Communication (1973)47(3), 346-368.

Foss, S. K. (2017). Rhetorical criticism: Exploration and practice. Waveland Press.

Leff, M. C., & Mohrmann, G. P. (1974). Lincoln at Cooper Union: A rhetorical analysis of the text. Quarterly Journal of Speech60(3), 346-358.



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