Look out Wolf Blitzer, Anderson Cooper, and any other television pundit. Google has entered the presidential primary conversation in a fun and engaging way. Not only does this election include candidates like we’ve never seen, but also the way voters engage with the election has changed dramatically.
Google teamed with Twitter and Twittervision to provide known Super Tuesday primary election results. I found this Tuesday night when I had jumped online to check in on election results. Sure I had CNN tuned in on my television, but I wanted to go online where I could see a results list that isn’t constantly scrolling. Sometimes you want to take a longer look at results.
Around 10pm Eastern Time Tuesday night I was happily surprised to find a Google Maps interface that not only showed me currently primary results via an XML feed, but they were paired with comments from people Twittering all over the country.
I think it is a strong message to the television stations to be ready for another sea change. Through Google and Twitter thousands of Americans were able to look at results and talk with each other about how they feel things are going. Every voter has an opinion and I think much of America is getting bored with TV news as the opinions given come from the same group over and over again. Wolf and Anderson only get to vote once each, right? So why listen to them night after night. We know where they stand.
Google and Twitter give voters the chance to hear from many other voters. We can interact with other voters and join a conversation. There is no conversation with the television. Although, if you ask my wife she may say there is a conversation with the television. She will tell you that Duncan seems to keep yelling at Wolf and Anderson to say something new or meaningful. They never really answer though.
The future of election reporting will never be the same. In four years you will likely have higher turnout and discussion in the online social networking world than you will have old school television watching.
Change is truly here, but it is not only the candidates that are different.