There’s an election today, in case you hadn’t heard, and most of your favorite Internet and social media sites are eager to take part in the democratic (note the small letter “d”) process.
If you’re registered but not sure where to vote, Google’s homepage today has a link to its election information site where you can look up your polling place and find links to other news and information. Clicking on the Google doodle will also take you directly to a polling place look-up.
Facebook is doing something similar: The giant social network has put a “Find My Polling Place” link at the top of U.S. users’ news feeds. The link uses Facebook partner Microsoft’s Bing search engine, although it produced an error message when I tried it this morning.
Facebook is also offering an online variation on those little paper “I Voted” stickers that you get when you cast your ballot in person. Click on the “I’m a Voter” link and you’ll be added to Facebook’s “real-time” tally of people who have cast their votes across the country. You’ll also get a link to a page with a map and charts showing where people have voted – although not who they voted for. And note: it’s not really a tally of how many people have voted, just how many people have announced their action on Facebook.
(Plenty of people have already announced their votes online, by the way: According to a Pew Research Center poll, some 22 percent of registered voters have declared how they voted or planned to vote on social media sites like Facebook or Twitter.)
Over on Twitter, the micro-blogging service is touting its “Guide to Election Day” which has a handy list of Twitter accounts for the chief election office in each state, so you can follow their official updates through the day. Twitter also has a page where you can follow election news updates from a variety of sources.
Yahoo, meanwhile, has created an election news page that compiles Twitter feeds, news updates, links and videos at one location, although it was kinda quiet when I checked in this morning.
Lots of other sites have election news today, of course. Naturally, we’re biased in favor of www.mercurynews.com