As we move ever closer to the November election between President Barack Obama and former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney, the national temperature appears to be rising. Perhaps it’s the late summer heat that has so many of us flustered, or perhaps it’s the constant bombardment of political attack ads and the lamentations of national pundits. Sometimes it can seem like the political climate in this country is full of opinions and short on facts.
Unfortunately, such an approach to complex political issues doesn’t do the world a whole lot of good. A polarized public is rarely an informed one, and when the tempers start flaring it’s easy to lose sight of some basic truths—namely that we are all in this together, for better or for worse, and it’s up to us to make informed decisions about our political leadership.
In a saturated media environment, voices of moderation aren’t always the loudest, but they’re quite often the most important. At Blue Focus Marketing, we are not interested in contributing to a polarizing debate. However, we do feel that every person’s vote is important, and that it’s important that voters develop a strong, nuanced understanding of the issues before casting their ballots.
A Comprehensive Tool for Tracking Candidate Activities
A new project by my friend Christopher Burgess (@BurgessCT), COO & CSO at Atigeo, seeks to provide the public with exactly this service with the launch of Red2012blue.com and Blue2012red.com. These sites, which Christopher Burgess describes as providing an “agnostic view” of the relevant issues in the current election cycle, collect data from each candidate’s Twitter, Facebook and RSS feeds in order to provide a comprehensive issues on where the candidates stand and how they are leveraging social media to make their cases.
While parties in previous elections in 2004 and 2008 began to use social media and the Internet at large to energize their bases, this year’s election cycle has seen an unprecedented expansion in that process. According to an Atigeo press release, “Data analytics is revolutionizing the run up to the 2012 presidential elections, as both candidates have deployed seasoned digital operations and data mining techniques that identify, connect with and mobilize voters.”
In other words, candidates are spending big money in order to connect with their voters via social channels. With such an influx of information through Facebook and Twitter, sometimes it can be easy to get caught up in the moment and lose sight of the big picture. By using their sophisticated xPatterns platform, Atigeo monitors the feeds not only of the candidates themselves, but of the Democratic and Republican National Committees as well. The data are then collected and organized into their relevant categories—such as immigration reform, national security and civil rights—offering voters a user-adaptive and agnostic platform for digging deeper into the candidates’ positions and making connections on their own. No pundits, no analysts—just the facts.
How Do the Websites Work?
According to Atigeo’s press release, “The xPatterns platform improves its analytical value through machine learning of user’s interaction with structured and unstructured data. In other words, it gets smarter the more a voter uses it.” Sure, it can be a little intimidating at first to dive headfirst into the political morass, but the great thing about an intuitive platform such as this is that it’s designed to help reduce the anxiety and help voters get to the very bottom of the issues that mean the most to them.
Click the video below to watch a demonstration:
Click here for more from Christopher Burgess on Atigeo’s mission in creating these sites: