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Wednesday, August 27, 2008

US elections and innovative mobile apps

Like much of the world, I'm pretty hooked on watching the protracted process of the US presidential elections. In the past, they've largely passed me by with a bewildering slew of wonk-ese jargon terms like caucus and primary and delegates. This time around, vastly improved TV and Internet coverage has made it all more accessible to an international audience.

So it's unsurprising that mobile technology has also been dragged into the media whirl of the election.

Tomi has a great post about the use of SMS notification by Obama, although from a European perspective I can't help thinking that it's not exactly innovative to use text messages for political purposes. This is from Spain in 2004, and this from Hungary in 2002. It's also helped Morgan Tsvangirai in Zimbabwe.

Obviously theres loads of blogging, YouTubing and Twittering going on as well. But the latest fad in the US, apparently, is for campaign ringtones. And perhaps more interesting still is the use of candidate-specific video ringback tones by Vringo.

I'm not certain how well these will travel. I can certainly tell you right now that anyone I call that foists a video of Gordon Brown on me at the next UK elections, will be getting SMSs instead of calls until they switch it off.

1 comment:

Wireless Geek said...


Check out the Jack Uldrich campaign for U.S. Senate in Minnesota at www.DoTheImpossible08.com. He is useing Livecast (live video blogging if you will) from the Minnesota State Fair, and contends that he will continue to use the technology in his role as Senator if he gets elected.

Click on the Live/Not Live logo near the top of the page to see any live webcasting and the archive of conversations and video he has already broadcast.