Thursday, August 2, 2007

Popular Websites Will Not Bring Youth To The Polls!

Have you ever seen the annoying little banners at the top of your computer screen when on a website like myspace or facebook? Of course you have. Have you ever tried to play the game it is asking you to play so you can win whatever prize? I would think that some of you did, if only to see what would happen, but you were smart enough to realize that it's a scam.
That said, why would people pay any more attention to ads or banners from presidential candidates on the websites they frequent? Seriously folks, most of the people that use myspace or facebook are not trying to change the world. Conversely, they are often connecting with friends, looking for dates, or surfing. The mere fact that these sites are so popular now just means that people know about them. It is in NO WAY indicative of how or when someone will vote.
Call me what you will, but there are a lot of things that may or may not be good alternatives to sitting in front of either a computer screen or Xbox 360. That doesn't mean the youth of America are going to get involved with them.
The problem with this topic, which is actually quite amusing, is that every four years, a candidate says they will win the election because of the youth vote. A few years back, Howard Dean raised a ton of money by using teens and twenty-somethings to solicit through the internet. Obviously Dean got spanked in the primaries, but that didn't keep John Kerry from hedging a victory on young voters coming through for him. Are these people serious? Sure, you can get people involved a lot easier through the internet because they are already on there, but getting them to the polls to vote is a lot more difficult. Do the research, the percentage of young voters has not had an impact on elections over the past few campaigns and it will not in 2008. There will be countless candidates, who will allow themselves to think this will be the year of the internet platform, but the joke's on them.