Facebook and CNN are jointly launching an "I'm Voting" application to encourage social-networking users to openly reveal their voting preferences and initiate online election debate ahead of the coming US presidential election, the two companies announced Monday.
No date has been set for the launch, but the app will be available in both Spanish and English, said CNN. Users who opt-in will see their political commitments published on their personal timeline, news-feed, as well as a new nation-wide interactive voting map.
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CNN praised the initiative as one that will "take the pulse of the American electorate and amplify the voices" of Facebook users, describing the project as a “second screen” for CNN's election coverage.
The move is a novel approach for the traditional news media, which has long struggled with the best way to engage social-networking sites active in breaking-news situations.
CNN is eager to "tap into the social user base" available on Facebook, according to The Hill, and is expected to use the project for more traditional reporting work, such as gathering real-time opinions from voters.
Facebook, which claims over 160 million users in the United States, is also working with CNN to track campaign debates online and survey potential voters, reported The San Francisco Chronicle.