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Bernie Sanders’ filibuster becomes media sensation

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Last Friday, Vermont Independent Senator Bernie Sanders talked… and talked…. and talked… for eight and a half hours.  His filibuster was a protest to the Obama administration’s tax cut deal, and it lasted from 10:25 a.m. to 6:59 p.m.  His old-fashioned political technique became an internet sensation throughout the course of the day.

With C-SPAN2 originally broadcasting the senate session, C-SPAN took advantage early by advertising the filibuster on its website and Twitter account.  As the day went on, more and more people began to pay attention to Sanders’ speech.  News of the filibuster blew up on the internet.  Bernie Sanders was the top trending toping on Twitter in the nation friday afternoon, with another trending topic being the hashtag #filibernie.  This allowed people on Twitter who were following it to get updates and interact with other people following.  Also on Twitter, Bernie Sanders’ staff updated his account throughout the day, and the account gained more than 4,000 followers. and other news sites also streamed the filibuster live, with the stream becoming so popular that the senate’s video server temporarily shut down.  Many left-leaning political shows made this their top story of the day, including Keith Olbermann (video below).

This was probably one of the biggest media sensations ever concerning the happenings of a senate session.  Many people were able to follow along through many different ways.  Bernie Sanders’ filibuster is a great example of how social media is changing the way politics and other aspects of our society are being covered.


Written by Eric Vander Voort

December 19, 2010 at 10:08 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

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