Monday, June 9, 2008

John Evans Atta Mills added you as a friend on Facebook

John Evans Atta Mills added you as a friend on Facebook

When I got this message in my inbox, it was a great reminder about changing role of Information and communication technologies (ICTs) in Ghanaian political space especially in year 2008 elections.

Atta Mills campaign is also making use of which delivers you with an ad from Atta Mills another time you search google with relevant key words or viewing a page with those key words.

Is the impact, potentials and challenges of the use of ICTs in 08 GH elections a topic worth following?

The USA example,
The powerful use of the Internet especially online social networking which invariably lead to recruiting new voters and raising of record campaign funds is one the key tool Obama had in his basket of tools to become the presumptive presidential candidate of the democratic party

the numbers comparing Obama and Clinton on facebook
- 929,840 supporters
- 158,788 supporters
(Note the distinction between supporters and friends, you set facebook to distinguish your friends and supporters, which our local politicians have not figure out, I could be your supporter but not necessary your friend)

One school of thought argues against the motion that ICT is going to play an important role in Ghana 08 elections because of the low level of Internet penetration among other ICTs tools but one can point to the fast growing mobile phones users in Ghana, for example, the NPP presidential candidate, Nana Akuffo Addo,,took a brilliant move when he opted for the use of SMS in campaign fund raising which can reach people in many villages instead of the Internet.
By sending a text message to a premium short code you instantly make a donation of one dollar to the NPP campaign.
It will be interesting to find out how this ICT enabled fund raising is going. Secondly, if the full one dollar goes to the campaign or he is sharing the donation with the service providers which is the case in most premium short code business arrangement.

Of course Nana Akuffo Addo is a friend on Facebook , one of his 1,658 growing friends on face book

Though ICT is not going to cause a major revolution during Ghana's 08 elections, it is going to play a crucial role and any politician who can harness it effectively is going to be rewarded by some previous votes!!!!!!!!!!!!

We are running the biggest elections 08 user content generation project and also monitoring the use of ICTs in elections 08, if you want to get involved send a mail to
See our blog at
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