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Top 5 ways to follow the US election online

Posted by Danny Whatmough on 10th October 2008

BBC Election Bus

This blog has been living for two months and there has yet to be a ‘top xx’ list! Well, that will be remedied today with our look at the top online locations to follow the US election.

This follows an earlier post looking at how technological developments have influenced the election so far (and it is also a nice, fun inclusion for our October email newsletter, which you can subscribe to by emailing us!).

So here goes, in reverse order:

5) Traditional media (online) – It is no surprise that media outlets around the globe are rushing to provide 24-hour online coverage of the US election.  State-side, USA Today – America’s most widely read paper, has a great interactive map for those that want to check where exactly Idaho is, and Murdoch’s New York Post gives a slightly different perspective! Back at home, the Guardian leads the way with a detailed microsite covering everything from news and video to weather reports and a poll tracker. As ever, the BBC does a solid job of giving you everything you could possibly need.

4) New media – There is developing a new brand of online professional journalism that falls someway between the old media organisations, aiming to stamp their mark on the web, and the ‘amateur-blogger’ types. These so-called ‘professional blog networks’ are appearing all over the place. The best known (especially in the US) is the Huffington Post (which incidentally alone ranks above 11 US newspaper websites), where you can find tonnes of comment and commentary on what is going on. Another one to check out is Politico, which has really taken off through the duration of this election campaign.

3) YouTube – The popular video site remains the place to go for all your election video needs. McCain and Obama obviously have their own channels, but you can also pick up a selection of media outlets and their offerings not to mention the array of viral videos that the candidates would rather you didn’t see!

2) Bloggers – Understandably the blogosphere is all-over the election. Blogs range from journalists following the candidates and their every move, to supporters on both sides aiming to tell the world their latest thoughts and comments. And of course the candidates themselves: Obama and McCain. Potentially the most interesting blog out there, is John McCain’s own daughter, Meghan, and her blog: McCain Blogette!

and the winner is…

1) Twitter – of course! The election looks as though it will be the event that starts to bring Twitter to the masses in the US (we are still a bit further behind over here). Twitter has launched a great election microsite where you can see up-to-date ‘tweets’ on the election in real-time. Expect this to be buzzing as the results roll in. It’s worth following during the debates too! Of course the candidates (@McCain/@Obama) have their own feeds and so does the media (@GuardianUS08, @ElectionExpress and @Reuters_Trail08).

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