Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Election Coverage Lessons

Election night in the United States brought us interactive websites, holographic interviews, and more data than any one person could possibly digest. None-the-less, there are a few lessons educators can learn from the news event of the decade.

Words and how they are delivered are powerful agents of change.

In the end, the most powerful part of the evening was simple... a man, a message, and the coming together of people from around the world.

Interactivity can and should be used to engage your audience.

This was the first US Election in the age of YouTube, whose Video Your Vote channel garnered attention from across the United States.

While John King is the master of the Multi-touch Collaboration Wall,the Associated Press map and the National Public Radio map let participants create their own scenarios and to drill down through state and county statistics.

The technology is only the means to an end.

Holograms are 'cool' but the wow factor fades quickly. While Obama's words are sure to live on for decades, the gaudy technologies used by broadcasters to connect with viewers, will soon be forgotten.

Eye candy can be used to tell a story, but don't let the technology fool you into believing it's any bit as important as the real story. Wasn't the story of the presidential election compelling enough? In case you missed it, apparently CNN's holograms were really tomograms.