HAU

Cyborg political machines: Political brokering and modern political campaigning in Colombia

Maria L. Vidart-Delgado

Abstract


Colombian professional political consultants couple information technologies and local political brokering to circumvent strict voter privacy regulations that limit campaigns’ access to voters’ personal data. I argue that political consultants use information technologies to bolster traditional vertical, personality-centered political organizations, and to produce tightly controlled “cyborg political machines.” I challenge widespread notions that oppose media-based politics to traditional face-to-face politics (known also as clientelism). Instead, I show that although political elites introduced American political marketing methods hoping to modernize campaigns, the American way provided a new framework to preserve traditional authoritarian political arrangements after the extensive democratic reforms of the early 1990s.


Keywords


elections, marketing, democracy, Colombia

Full Text:

PDF HTML EPUB MOBI


DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.14318/hau7.2.027