She added: "It's not intentional. They're the popular sites and it's where the people are now. But there are hundreds of social networking sites out there. By partnering with the big ones, politicians reinforce these companies as institutions."
"The exposure — being branded as 'the' place to go for social media — has huge economic consequences for these companies," says Heather LaMarre, a journalism professor at the University of Minnesota who studies politics and the Internet. "When they appear to be socially active and engaged in democracy, they develop a vast well of good will with the political elites who have the ability to make or break them in the future."