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Parties Share Tools, Split on Objectives in UK Election

BY Nancy Scola | Monday, April 12 2010

Each of the three major political parties in the United Kingdom are attempting to capitalize on the web and digital campaigning, writes Gaby Hinsliff in the Guardian, but Conservatives, Labour, and the Liberal Dems have using the means and medium to achieve different political objectives.

Hinsliff's rundown is a terrific look at what the parties are doing online to compete in the upcoming general election. All three parties have been experimenting with a mix of social networking, web video, emails, and other digital techniques. But while they all share the goal of winning more seats in Parliament, their short-term targets differ.

Labour, writes Hinsliff, is using the web to rally its base and turn out likely supporters, especially those demoralized by Prime Minister Gordon Brown's struggles and other recent bumps in the road.

Tories, writes Hinsliff, are using social media in particular to erase the stigma of voting conservative. In particular, they've been making a point to highlight both the approachability of conservative leader David Cameron and the diverse faces of Britons who are backing conservative leadership this time around.

Liberal Dems, writes Hinsliff, are faced with the challenge of breaking through the political din and having their voices heard in a landscape dominated by Labour and the Tories. They are aided by the fact, she writes, that social media is generally less costly than other types of media.

The standing British Parliament is, officially, dissolved today. The general election is scheduled for May 6th.