Federal Election 2010: Labor's social networking strategy

The ALP is using a combination of internal and external social networking platforms throughout its campaign

A week into the Australian Labor Party’s (ALP) election campaign, the party’s personal social networking platform, Labor Connect, has 1080 members, however the majority of members are yet to interact with each other.

Labor Connect, runs on a proprietary technology platform called Campaign IQ, created exclusively for Labor by Community Engine and the Campaign and Communications Group.

Community Engine managing director, Piers Hogarth-Scott, described the tool as similar to Facebook.

“It provides a forum for the party to connect and collaborate with the community in an inclusive and transparent collaborative manner,” Hogarth-Scott told Computerworld Australia.

“You can make friends with other community members, you can message your friends, leave posts on your friend’s walls, form groups around particular issues you care about, invite friends to join those groups and have discussions around those groups.”

Despite sporting many similar features and capabilities to Facebook, Labor Connect’s user activity and interaction is limited in comparison to the support indicated on Julia Gillard's and the ALP’s Facebook pages.

To further involvement, the site has a "Get Involved" page where supporters are encouraged to participate in Think Tank debates, although at time of writing has a total of just 74 ideas or policy suggestions, 80 comments around 2 issues; health and economic reform.

Users can also join conversations on the ALP's blog, sign up to receive newsletters, volunteer to recruit other supporters and spread the message via letterbox drops.

In addition to Labor Connect, the party still sees a requirement for mainstream social networks to spread its message, integrating Twitter feeds and enabling ALP forum members to share content with the social networks.

The party is active on popular social media platforms with Facebook and Twitter accounts for the ALP (1,792 fans), Julia Gillard (41,479 fans), in addition to an ALP MySpace (23,792 friends) profile, YouTube channel and a Flickr profile.

Campaign and Communications Group (responsible for the political components of Campaign IQ), managing director, Michael Allen, said the ALP recognise the significance of social media as a political campaign tool as demonstrated by Barack Obama’s presidential campaign.

“We recognise the power of social media as a way of communicating political campaigns. I think we all realise that social media is a part of political communication, on par with the advent of television and the telephone.” Allen said.

Hogarth-Scott agrees, “It’s also about recognising that social networking is a great enabler to the conversation and it’s moving from a simple broadcast mechanism to one of a conversation with the community and that’s the most powerful aspect of it.”

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More about: ALP, Australian Labor Party, ecruit, Facebook, Labor Party, LP
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Comments

Anon

1

I heard the only way that the Liberal Party and the National Party (the Coalition) can afford their election promises is to increase the GST.
Anon

RS

2

What I find inriguing is that the two Coalition members have opposing ICT views. No wonder they still do not have a policy!

Apparently the Nationals are for the NBN and against net filtering - hooray!

Where as the Liberals ars against the NBN and fence sitting on net filtering.

If I voted National and the Coalition win - with Liberal party leader Tony Abbott as PM then scrapping the NBN and a filter in fact introduced too, I'd be p***ed, feel duped and rue my wasted vote!

A team having different views on the one issue is sneakily dishonest imho...

Charles Becket

3

Sirs or Madams: I do not believe that Labor is selling the ability to make a decision like the one that was designed to save our economy during the Global Financial Crisis. My wife and I have just come back from Italy where we sadly witnessed the result of the GFC at first hand. In a small town we were staying, the local unemployed set up their tented embassy in the main square. This embassy represented 150 families. We met this civil engineer from Salerno who cannot get employment as a CE. Fortunately for him, his qualifications allows him to teach maths and physics in government schools. But the work is only casual and has to travel six hours a day three days a week. And we were horrified at how low teaching salaries are in Italy. It seems obvious to me that as the Australian population has not suffered any downturns they take the symptoms of the GFC for granted. I believe that the Labor campaign make need to make a statement to the population to the effect of this note.

Regards and Good Luck. The coalition is getting too easy a run.

Charles Becket

Graeme Prosser

4

There has been an implication that Julia Gilliard does not have a "narrative", people don't know what she stands for and as an atheist does not respect human life and the sanctity of marriage like a christian, implying also, lesser morals.
Julia Gilliard has role-modelled through her life story a political narrative in traditional and personal education reaching a place of prominence. Her atheism, like many others, has been arrived at by education gained through history, open-minded opinion, rich thought, science, information technology, personal experience and wide consultation.
As authors of religious texts, such as the bible and koran, probably built on messages of their predecessors, so too people of awareness and wisdom have built on the ideals of these ancient texts. Julia Gilliard's upbringing in the church and suggest she has too.
History shows that societies are more harmonious when individuals do the right thing,after consideration of what is best for all under the prevailing conditions. A moral stands on it's own feet when founded on reason. the use of heaven and hell to encourage good behaviour is not sound principle when compared to reasoning that good behaviour makes societies more harmonious, enjoyable, safe, civil and with fewer conflicts.
I would like to see the ALP capitalise on this aspect.

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