Tech Watch: Social Media and the #ERdebate

Category:  Tech Watch
Wednesday, April 4th, 2012 at 9:35 AM
Tech Watch: Social Media and the #ERdebate by David Hunter, Epic Web Studios

By: Michael Haas, Director of Social Media
Epic Web Studios

On April 11 and 13, The Erie Reader will host the 2012 Downtown Debate Series. Local political candidates for both the State House and State Senate primaries will come to hash out conflicting viewpoints and solidify their positions on a number of Erie-related issues. For a fuller discussion, read this issue’s Upfront on page 4.

But what if you can’t make it to the Masonic Temple Banquet and Conference Center? No worries, you can still participate in the debate through Social Media! We will be live-tweeting, Facebooking, and blogging about the event, as well as taking questions from the social media platforms.

So HOW do you do this? I’m glad you asked:

To submit a question for the debate, just post it to Erie Reader’s page, and tag the candidate you would like to have answer the question (to tag a candidate, simply write @ before you start typing the name). You can find the Erie Reader’s page at The more interaction your question receives (i.e. “likes”, comments, shares), the more likely we will ask the question at the debate.

To submit a question for the debate via Twitter, include @ErieReader in the tweet and make sure the question is less than 140 characters long! Make sure you add the candidate the question is intended for (we can’t read your mind!) in your tweet. Also include the hashtag #ERdebate so that everyone else can follow along and interact with your question. The more interaction your question receives (i.e. retweets, replies), the more likely we will ask the question at the debate.

Throughout the debate, we will be posting the questions asked to the candidates and their responses. If you feel the candidate did not give a satisfactory answer, or if you have a follow-up question, simply comment on the post on Facebook that has the question/response. If you’re on Twitter, simply reply to the tweet and include the candidate you’d like to respond. As with all tweets related to the debate, include the hashtag #ERdebate.

If you want to get involved in the conversation on Facebook, all you need to do is comment on a post from Erie Reader OR you can tag Erie Reader in a status update to get your friends talking about the event! To find everyone talking about the event on Twitter, search for #ERdebate, and make sure to include it in all of your tweets. Reply, retweet, and favorite all the best commentary, and be sure to share it all!

If you have any questions or comments, Tweet at me (@michaeljhaas) or find me on Facebook at I’ll see you online on April 11 and 13!

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