ELECTIONS have joined the digital age, with many candidates taking to social media to spruik their policies and engage with voters.
WaggaNow has asked Wagga City Council candidates to complete a profile to publish on our website, including contact details and where to go to find out more about candidates’ policies.
So far, responses have been received from members of three group tickets, as well as four of the ungrouped candidates, with the vast majority using Facebook, Twitter or both to share their ideas.
Social media is nothing new on the political scene – it was used to great effect by former prime minister Kevin Rudd when he combined YouTube, MySpace and Amazon on a “Kevin07” website at the 2007 federal election.
Prime Minister Julia Gillard currently has more than 262,000 followers on Twitter, while US President Barack Obama’s Facebook page has almost 28 million “likes”.
However, this year has seen social media infiltrate local government campaigns like never before.
While some candidates are using their Facebook or Twitter accounts purely to publish their stance on various issues facing the city, others are keen to engage with voters and answer questions from the electorate.
Other candidates, like Greg Conkey and Clint Uden, have created websites dedicated to their election campaigns.
Social media has also been abuzz with users commenting on the local government election.
A number of Wagga residents took to Twitter to analyse the Rural Ratepayers Association candidate forum held on Tuesday night, while others have suggested a Q and A-type forum with candidates could be carried out on social media.
Local government elections will be held across the state on September 8.