Personal Democracy Plus Our premium content network. LEARN MORE You are not logged in. LOG IN NOW >

For the Campaigns, Online Debate Response is All About Mobile

BY Nick Judd | Wednesday, October 3 2012

The Obama and Romney campaigns will be trying to reach supporters through mobile devices tonight to talk about this evening's presidential debate, and for good reason.

Half of all Americans have Internet access through a tablet or a smartphone, according to data released Monday by Pew Research Center’s Project for Excellence in Journalism and The Economist Group. It doesn't matter whether someone is watching the debate on home television, at a computer or in a bar — there's a fifty-fifty chance that any debate viewer has an Internet-ready second screen.

The Romney campaign's highlight effort is a new microsite built using responsive design principles, so it resizes and scales to fit whatever device you're using to view it. The site will carry an embed of the debate feed, will push rebuttals to President Barack Obama's arguments during the debate, and will also carry material supportive of Mitt Romney's statements.

"This site will continue our campaign’s commitment to a multi-screen digital strategy and allow users the enhanced opportunity to engage with the debate from a computer, tablet, or mobile device," Romney's digital director, Zac Moffatt, wrote in an email. "We will also post research, infographics, and video from our Rapid Response Team and feature a handful of our top Twitter users aggregating their Tweets in real time."

The campaign will also be pushing out its arguments through its rapid-response Twitter account and its tumblr.

Obama for America also has a responsive site set up specifically for the debates, and will be carrying a live stream there viewable from mobile devices.

Vice President Joe Biden will appear on the livestream feed immediately following the debate, Obama campaign spokesman Adam Fetcher wrote in an email.

Campaign supporters will be watching the debates at more than 4,000 watch parties across the country, Fetcher said in the email. The Democratic National Committee has also released Romney-Ryan Revealed, another responsive site that carries Democratic talking points about the Republican ticket.

News Briefs

RSS Feed thursday >

NYC Open Data Advocates Focus on Quality And Value Over Quantity

The New York City Department of Information Technology and Telecommunications plans to publish more than double the amount of datasets this year than it published to the portal last year, new Commissioner Anne Roest wrote last week in an annual report mandated by the city's open data law, with 135 datasets scheduled to be released this year, and almost 100 more to come in 2015. But as preparations are underway for City Council open data oversight hearings in the fall, what matters more to advocates than the absolute number of the datasets is their quality. GO

Civic Tech and Engagement: Announcing a New Series on What Makes it "Thick"

Announcing a new series of feature articles that we will be publishing over the next several months, thanks to the support of the Rita Allen Foundation. Our focus is on digitally-enabled civic engagement, and in particular, how and under what conditions "thick" digital civic engagement occurs. What we're after is answers to this question: When does a tech tool or platform enable actual people to make ongoing and significant contributions to each other, to a place or cause, at a scale that produces demonstrable change? GO

monday >

Tweets2Rue Helps Homeless to Help Themselves Through Twitter

While most solutions to homelessness focus on addressing physical needs -- a roof over the head and food to eat -- one initiative in France known as Tweets2Rue knows that for the homeless, a house is still not a home, so to speak: the homeless are often entrenched in a viscous cycle of social isolation that keeps them invisible and powerless. GO

Oakland's Sudo Mesh Looks to Counter Censorship and Digital Divide With a Mesh Network

In Oakland, a city with deep roots in radical activism and a growing tech scene at odds with the hyper-capital-driven Silicon Valley, those at the Sudo Room hackerspace believe that the solution to a wide range of problems, from censorship to the digital divide, is a mesh net, a type of decentralized network that is resilient to censorship and disruption and can also bring connectivity to poor communities.

GO

More