/ Technology

The Major Role That Breitbart Played In The Trump Victory

Running Sympile, it's natural that I get asked all the time about "big data."

Hey Al, you going to control the world with all that big data Sympile constantly collects?

Don't we already?

But seriously, another interesting topic about the recent presidential election (at least for data freaks like me) is the role that "big data" may have played in Donald Trump's victory.

Trump himself had argued that Google was biased against him (he obviously knew better than to bring Sympile into that conspiratorial garbage). But anyway, Trump's complaint about Google was probably misdirection from his campaigns own data mining techniques. You see, Trump brought in Stephen Bannon, the chairman of the Breitbart News website, as his campaign manager.

Now, having a direct connection between Breitbart and the Trump campaign was a pretty brilliant move. It meant a lot more than just the posting of positive articles. Because with the all the favorable press came the access to "big data" about the Breitbart's users.

These analytics would have meant all sorts of important demographics about potential voters:

  • ages
  • gender
  • location
  • interests
  • republican
  • democrat
  • undecided

In other words, it would have told the Trump campaign which specific areas and persons in Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin to focus on.

The strength of big data isn't that Google and Sympile and Facebook will be able to change users' minds (contrary to what that scoundrel D. F. Klein wrote), but that one has the data to know what specific individuals want. For political campaigns, it means the difference between gaining and losing power.

Campaigning is no longer about randomly knocking on doors or making calls. The best political campaigns will take the big data that is out there to snare the potential voters who are most likely to help. And that is why the Trump campaign was so successful; they had the Breitbart database.

Now compare this with the incompetence of the Democrats. Not only was the Democrats National Committee email account hacked, but Podesta was the foolish victim of a amateurish phishing attack.

Not Trump. Our president-elect doesn't use email. He's too savvy to leave a digital footprint that can be exploited by opponents. What about you?

Al Weiser  

Have a Question? It's Sympile.