Let’s face it, political conventions are not terribly newsworthy. Except for the rare event of a teleprompter breakdown, or an Academy award-winning actor having a heart-to-heart with a chair, nothing that happens is likely to be surprising. Did the Republicans nominate Mitt Romney? The Dems nominated Barack Obama? Gee, what a surprise!
Enter Twitter. Oh, Twitter! How we love what you’ve done for democracy!
ABC’s coverage of the Democratic National Convention last night included a selection of tweets, near real-time, fed by their inclusion of a caption listing the hashtag #dnc2012. So, we got to see some reactions from people watching as they tweeted about the event. Now THAT’S more like it!
From the perspective of a heavy social media user, TV is always sort of boring. The fun part comes when you get to see what your circle of friends and acquaintances thought of what you were mutually, but separately, watching. So, ABC took a step in the right direction. Maybe others did, too…I’ll confess to not having the patience to wade through more than one broadcast.
The reactions of the non-media – aka, the electorate – are more interesting to me than most of the content of the actual convention.
What I’d like to see is something more like a stock ticker at the bottom of the screen, with constant, real-time updates. It should have an ‘off’ option, like closed-captioning. Or, not. Everyone will eventually get used to a constant stream of information from any viewing device.