The Nation: The Growing Political Power of TikTok. “Because of the short-form video platform’s unique content-sharing algorithm and vertical-swipe interface, TikTok allows tens of millions of users to quickly access political information directly from community organizers, candidates, and journalists. Crucially, though, it’s the platform’s video-first focus that sets the app apart from competitors like Twitter.”
Bloomberg: Conspiracy Theories Prompt Top Finnish Health Authority to Quit Twitter. “The rampant spread of conspiracy theories on Twitter has pushed Finland’s top health authority to stop using the platform to disseminate its public-health messages.”
Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services: DHHS To Launch The IServe Nebraska Explore Benefits Tool. “The Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) will soon launch a new feature of the iServe Nebraska portal – Explore Benefits, an anonymous, mobile-friendly, pre-screening tool to help Nebraskans identify benefits for which they may qualify.” The tool will launch in both English and Spanish on January 27.
Washington Post: Twitter bans account for D.C.-area bus system without explanation. “Metro officials said they weren’t told why the social media company suspended the account, @metrobusinfo. Before the suspension, Metro officials said, the account had not posted anything other than standard content, which includes route scheduling information, delay and detour updates, customer-service-related tips, and replies to customer complaints or concerns.”
New York Times: Librarians Are Meeting Younger Readers Where They Are: TikTok. “The pandemic wiped out decades of progress in children’s reading skills. So what’s a librarian hoping to engage children and teenagers with books and reading to do? ‘Meet them where they are,’ said Sara Day, a teen services librarian at the Woodland Public Library in Woodland, Calif. And that, she said, is on TikTok.”
StateScoop: Musk’s changes create Twitter blues for government agencies. “Since its emergence in the late 2000s, Twitter has become a standard component in state and local governments’ messaging toolboxes, particularly for agencies that need to get information out as quickly as possible. By 2010, 81% of states were using Twitter regularly, according to a survey published that year by the National Association of State Chief Information Officers. Since then, its use by the public sector has only grown, from traffic and weather alerts to statewide accounts making cheeky jokes.”
NPR: False information is everywhere. ‘Pre-bunking’ tries to head it off early. “Officials in Ann Arbor, Michigan, Union County, North Carolina, and Contra Costa County, California, are posting infographics on social media urging people to ‘think critically’ about what they see and share about voting and to seek out reliable election information.”
BusinessWire: Vote Run Lead Launches New Tool Critical to Understanding Representation and the Importance of State Legislative Races (PRESS RELEASE). “Vote Run Lead, the nonprofit that trains women to run for political office and win, is launching a new data visualization tool called the State of My Democracy, that shows the state of democracy and women’s representation in America’s statehouses.”
Axios: How AI could help translate extreme weather alerts. “Gaps in language access to emergency alerts during extreme weather events have led to missed evacuations, injuries and loss of life for non-English speakers. Machine learning could mitigate that.”
Los Angeles Times: L.A. Times Launches ‘Shape Your L.A.’ Civic Engagement Tool. “The Los Angeles Times has launched a new civic engagement tool that shows Angelenos how to get involved in their communities. Dubbed ‘the people’s guide to power,’ Shape Your L.A. allows users to type in their address and get maps and relevant information about their local government and institutions, and how to contact their representatives in the state capitol and Washington, D.C.”
Social Media Examiner: How to Audit Social Media Marketing: A 9-Step Checklist. “Need to develop a new social media marketing strategy? Wondering how to audit your current social actions to see what’s working and what isn’t? In this article, you’ll discover a nine-step checklist to audit and adjust your social media strategy for the future.” A really good overview of marketing metrics and what to look for/think about without getting ridiculously in the weeds.
Associations Now: New Website Educates Ohio Voters on Judicial Races Ahead of Election Day. “Launched earlier this month, the Judicial Votes Count website provides information about Ohio’s judicial system and judicial candidates. [Ohio State Bar Association] CEO Mary Amos Augsburger said that historically a substantial number of voters skip voting for judicial candidates because they know little about them. For instance, there was a 16 to 18 percent dropoff in the number of voters who selected a candidate in the state’s Supreme Court races in 2020.”
NPR: The White House is turning to TikTok stars to take its message to a younger audience. “When President Biden hosted a celebration with lawmakers on the South Lawn last month to mark the passage of the Inflation Reduction Act, Democrats’ signature spending package, there was an unique group of guests joining them. More than 20 influencers — content creators with devoted followers on platforms like TikTok, Instagram and YouTube — received special invitations.”
Meredith College: New Website Aims to Make Voting Easier in North Carolina. “As Election Day 2022 fast approaches, a new tool has been launched to make the process easier for North Carolina voters. The site… was created by Meredith College Associate Professor of Political Science Whitney Ross Manzo and UNC-Chapel Hill Associate Professor of Public Policy Rebecca Kreitzer. According to Manzo and Kreitzer, between 35-60% of eligible American voters don’t vote in an average election. One of the reasons is that the process of voting is complicated and time-consuming. The new website is meant to take some of the confusion out of the process.”
The Hill: Social media engagement increases government action, reduces pollution: study . “Citizen engagement through social media leads to a significant improvement in government response and a decrease in water and air pollution, a new study has found.”