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18 July, 2024
 
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Fidias Panayiotou's election sets a new standard

Young YouTuber's surprise victory raises questions about the future of traditional politics in Cyprus

Newsroom

The election of YouTuber Fidias Panayiotou to the European Parliament has left traditional political parties in Cyprus rethinking their game plan, according to an article written by Kathimerini's Yiannis Ioannou.

Panayiotou, who came in third with 71,330 votes, beat many well-established parties and sparked a lot of discussions about why he did so well and what it means for the future.

Panayiotou's election also raises concerns about voters being influenced by content creators whose followers may not think critically about their choices, leading to blind allegiance.

Panayiotou, a 24-year-old who makes videos on YouTube and TikTok, doesn't have a clear political agenda. Despite this, he almost matched the votes of the two biggest parties. People are wondering if his success was because voters are fed up with traditional parties, just liked his online presence, or if it shows a new way of voting influenced by social media.

Some critics think Panayiotou's win shows "irrational" voting in the less strict European elections, suggesting that voters, especially young ones, were more drawn to his personality than any political ideas. These voters include apolitical people, rights activists, and even some who don't usually vote.

Panayiotou's appeal also crossed traditional lines, pulling in votes from conservative groups, including supporters of ELAM, showing a broader protest vote.

The big question now is what Panayiotou will do next. Will he actively work as a Member of the European Parliament (MEP), form political opinions, or just keep making videos? His actions could lead to a new political career or keep him in his current role as a content creator.

For traditional parties, Panayiotou's win highlights the need to understand and adapt to the new media landscape. Saying he was elected just because of his funny videos misses the point about changing voter behavior and the influence of social media.

Panayiotou's election also raises concerns about voters being influenced by content creators whose followers may not think critically about their choices, leading to blind allegiance.

As a young, conservative figure from a big family in a Cypriot village, Panayiotou's past actions, including controversial videos and public pranks, make his profile more complex. While he hasn't shown strong ideological biases, his new position as an MEP means he could have a bigger impact on public opinion.

In short, Panayiotou's election may serve as a wake-up call to traditional political systems. It highlights a shift towards a media-driven political environment, where social media personalities can shake up established norms. Traditional parties need to navigate this new landscape carefully, as Panayiotou's success could inspire similar candidates in future elections, challenging the status quo and possibly changing the political scene in Cyprus.

TAGS
Cyprus  |  elections  |  politics

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