Although the next presidential election is approximately four months away, CNN has already announced its running mate – Facebook. Joel Kaplan, Facebook’s Vice President of U.S. Public Policy, said the following regarding the new partnership with CNN:
“Each campaign cycle brings new technologies that enhance the way that important connections between citizens and their elected representatives are made. Though the mediums have changed, the critical linkages between candidates and voters remain. Innovations like Facebook can help transform this informational experience into a social one for the American people.”
Yesterday, CNN formally announced they are teaming up with Facebook to make this election more social by offering users the following:
“I’m Voting” Facebook App
Now, for the first time in voting history, normal people can use a Facebook app to endorse specific politicians. Once a user commits to vote for a candidate or chooses to endorse a candidate, the action is displayed on the Facebook timeline, news feed, and real-time ticker. The “I’m Voting” app will be available in both English and Spanish, and the vote commitment tallies will be visually depicted on an interactive map.
Measuring Facebook Buzz
In order to report accurate campaign information, CNN and Facebook are planning to aggregate statistics related to the political discussions on the social network about each candidate and their running mates. Once the statistics have been aggregated, CNN will provide users with state-specific data, and Facebook will report on users’ sentiments regarding the candidates.
The CNN editorial team and Facebook’s research team will co-write non-biased surveys to get accurate opinions of likely voters in critical locations. The results of the surveys will be published on CNN, CNN.com, and the U.S. Politics on Facebook page.
Facebook, which has more than 160 million U.S. users, represents a large cross-section of our country and the majority of U.S. presidential voters. Will this partnership benefit voters, or is politicizing social networks a bad idea?