Ruling AKP hires thousands for new social media campaign
ISTANBUL - Hürriyet Daily News
The team will be responsible for converting AKP sentiments into trending hashtags. AFP photoTurkey’s ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) has launched a massive project to boost the party’s social media presence by hiring over 6,000 new employees for its newly formed social media team, according to daily Star.
Over 900 districts will have its own AKP social media representatives, with a 1,000 staff to be located in Istanbul, 600 in Ankara, and approximately 400 in İzmir.
The team will be responsible for converting AKP sentiments into trending hashtags, Star reported.
The move came soon after the AKP was dealt a clear defeat in social media when Gezi protesters turned websites like Twitter and Facebook into tools for organizing protests, voicing mostly anti-government sentiments.
The frequency and intensity of the Gezi Park protests on social media reached levels so high that it prompted Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan to personally intervene, calling Twitter “a menace” and beginning a campaign against the website.
Many protesters were detained during the protests over their social media postings, with the online giant Facebook admitting to sharing information with Turkish police forces, despite previously denying the accusations.
Facebook claimed that the sharing of information was prompted by child endangerment and emergency law enforcement, and had nothing to do with the protests.
Transport, Maritime Affairs and Communication Minister Binali Yıldırım told reporters previously that Twitter had turned down a cooperation offer with the Turkish government during the protests but that Facebook had responded “positively.”