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November 04, 2008

Election Day 2008 via Social Media

At 7:15 AM I was at the polling place. I had never seen the school parking lot that full, for any occasion, in all the years I've lived in the neighborhood (over 10). The line inside turned out to be a 2-hour wait.

Election Day 2008: 7:15 AM

It has been utterly fascinating to me watching the campaign evolve through the social media. There is massive amounts of information available about this, so I am not going into any particular depth. I just wanted to share a few of things I found interesting.


While I was waiting in line at the polling place (a local school), a woman walked down the long hall with a camcorder, documenting the length of the line. I laughed. Later I found out there was actually a competition for election day videos. It was all a PBS idea ...

Election Day 2008 - Social Media Election Day 2008 - Social Media

PBS: Video Your Vote: http://www.pbs.org/vote2008/youtube/
Youtube: Video Your Vote: http://www.youtube.com/videoyourvote

But isn't legal in Michigan:

Election Day 2008 - Social Media
Citizen's Media Law: Guide: Documenting Your Vote: http://www.citmedialaw.org/legal-guide /documenting-your-vote

I learned here that it isn't legal in Michigan to post photos of your ballot, so it is a good thing I refrained from taking any! A fascinating way to catch a personal glimpse of the election day experience across the nation.


If something is big in Youtube, you can bet it is in Facebook and/or Myspace also.

Election Day 2008 - Social Media Election Day 2008 - Social Media

Facebook: Election 08: http://www.facebook.com/election08/
MySpace: MyVote: profile.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=user.viewprofile...


The first social media election coverage I really noticed was when Twitter made an election tracking banner at the head of every page. Their election page can be a real timewaster, as comments from real people scroll across the screen in real time as they happen.

Election Day 2008 - Social Media

Twitter: Election: http://election.twitter.com/


"A picture is worth a thousand words", and people must believe it seeing the extraordinary quantity of politically-themed groups, photos and images in Flickr, the famous photo sharing site. It has really brought the campaign and election to life, having so many different points of view and perspectives widely available in vivid technicolor!

Election Day 2008 - Social Media Election Day 2008 - Social Media

2008 Presidential Election: http://flickr.com/groups/election2008/
Early Voting 2008: http://flickr.com/groups/earlyvoting08/


Election Day 2008 - Social Media Election Day 2008 - Social Media

John McCain 2008: flickr.com/groups/mccain2008/
Barack Obama 2008: flickr.com/groups/barackobama2008/


Election Day 2008 - Social Media

Yahoo News - Election: http://flickr.com/groups/ynews_election2008/


Or perhaps simply bizarre politically-themed pictures.

Election Day 2008 - Social Media Election Day 2008 - Social Media
Election Day 2008 - Social Media Election Day 2008 - Social Media

Anti-Obama League: http://flickr.com/groups/anti-obama_league/
Barack Olantern: http://flickr.com/groups/876267@N24/
Dolls for Obama: http://flickr.com/groups/752938@N20/
John McCain Photoshop CHUDlenge: http://flickr.com/groups/mccain_chudlenge/


It becomes especially obvious how embedded the candidates are in social media when you check out their FriendFeed streams.

Election Day 2008 Election Day 2008

FriendFeed: Barack Obama: http://friendfeed.com/barackobama
FriendFeed: John McCain: http://friendfeed.com/johnmccain


I'm not really going to touch on the blogosphere and the current election, except to highlight just a couple excellent posts on how to use online resources to follow the election today.

Election Day 2008 - Social Media Election Day 2008

The Next Right: Where to Get Official Election Returns: http://www.thenextright.com/patrick-ruffini/where-to-get-official-election-returns
Silicon Alley Insider: How to Watch Election Day Live Online: www.alleyinsider.com/2008/11/how-to-watch-election-day-live-online


And yes, I did eventually succeed in voting. :)

Election Day 2008

Posted by pfa at November 4, 2008 03:23 PM


Great blog! Thanks!

Posted by: lsiden at November 9, 2008 12:01 PM

Thanks! Working on a sequel to this. SocMed followup to the election is equally fascinating.

Posted by: pfa at November 9, 2008 12:27 PM

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