Guest Author - Kathryn K Free
Election Day is days away. Many have already voted by absentee ballots and for others it is time to study the candidate information and points on the ballot. For those who are voting now is also the time to find your polling spot.
According to a Google blog post, searches for election-related information spike days before any election. Searches for voting rules, polling places, polls, how to register to vote and candidates’ platform. The internet has become important to elections. 2012 we have seen mobile phones being more used than the internet.
So below are some tools that will help you organize your voting information. Google has created a handy tool called ‘Voter Information Tool’ where you plug in your address to find your polling place or to see some special rules your states has for voting. This tool does not give all information on propositions, for example California state propositions are not included in this tool. Click here for the Voter Information Tool.
There are some additional APPs that are worth mentioning. Many news outlets have created stand-alone APPs just for this election. You will receive coverage and information all in one spot. The Washington Post’s Politics app for the iPad is one such APP. One of the key points to this APP is what they call ‘Candidate Tool’ which shows where each candidate stands on hot political issues. There is also a video content tool where you can hear the candidates speak on certain topics. The 'Maps and Data' tool is powerful also. It shows the current polls and projections for each candidate. Check out the all this information without all the ads that usually go along with this type of news coverage.
Voter Hub is another free mobile APP that is available for iOS, Android and Windows smartphones. Voter Hub is much like Google’s Voter Information Tool with one large difference. This APP aims to be your one-stop-APP for election information. You can register to vote, check your registration status, find your polling place, look at the calendar for deadline, find candidate information, find proposition and initiative information and more. And a time saving tool ~ you can check out the wait time throughout election day to find an off-peak voting time spot!
Now let us talk about political advertising. Do you know what is true and what is FAQ? Probably not. Well, no worries, there are several political advertising APPs you should look at. Super PAC and Ad Hawk are APPs that tells you which ads are fair and which ones smell a little fishy. So if you want to see if what you believe is true then you can use one of these two APPs: Ad Hawk or Super PAC / Both of these APPs will tell you who funded campaign ads you are watching. The purpose of these APPs are to bring transparency to the voter.
Election day and voting is a privilege. Voting is meaningful so be sure to vote!