The election results were a shock to the country, nearly every single poll was proven wrong and somehow the results seemed to go against the ‘mood’ of the country. The phenomena of ‘Shy Tories’ has become a media buzzword and a target of criticism from a militant left. This crescendo of criticism swelling against the right ring on social media explains so much. It is why would-be Tories remain ‘shy’ and also why so many anti-Tories were so surprised with the results.
How’s that? Well so often students posting on social media about how bad the conservatives are and how good the Labour/Green/Liberals are, they often seize the moral high ground. I doubt that all these shy Tories are selfish, money grabbing, callous individuals however I do not doubt that they are scared of going against such en masse hatred of their political views. A belligerent and self-righteous left, seemingly beyond reproach, is what cows these Tories into timidity. This is perhaps why so many Tories do not bother express their opinions because they know they will get torn down in a barrage of self righteous and emotive drivel rather than an open debate on policy.
However there does seem to be something intangibly iniquitous about this election. It did seem to all that the general mood of the country was against the Tories. Not just in regard to the polling’s, it was what your friends around you told you, its what social media was reinforcing the whole time. With Facebook in particular the algorithm used to show which story flashes on your screen is based on what you have viewed before. Meaning that if you have indulged in Guardian articles you will likely be shown more lefty media. (This is also true with the right.)
This bolsters an already chest thumping left who through their keyboards and touchscreen feel like they have won. The bottom line is that this created an echo chamber where ones personal views would be bounced back fabricating a reality where you think everyone agrees with you.
For us students what this led to was on the on hand, timid Tories reluctant to share their political allegiances and on the other, left wing students bolstered by their ideology and values being constantly reinforced in a social media ‘echo chamber.’ The result, a surprised and shell-shocked left howling on Facebook, Twitter and YikYak at the injustice of it all, and in left the shy Tories quietly carrying on with their lives.