By about mid-September, I’m already sick to death of all the political ads and media hype about upcoming elections, particularly in a presidential election year. The thing about mainstream political ads, particularly TV ads, is that you know they’re inherently biased—if they’re approved by a candidate, naturally they’re only telling one side of the story. Which isn’t to say they’re not telling the truth; you just need to recognize they have an agenda. So the purpose of these ads is either preaching to the choir or preying on the weak-minded.
Of course, I expect all of our readers get their news from a variety of online sources, covering a spectrum of political viewpoints, so that they can make an educated, unbiased decision. If that is, indeed, the case, then there’s a little app that iPhone users might be interested in. It’s called Campaign, and it was created by Gorloch Interactive, a company specializing in iPhone development. Campaign is designed to keep you up-to-date with the news and candidates of the 2008 US presidential election.
The app includes sections for news, candidates, and polls. You can choose to receive information only on your chosen party, Democrat or Republican, or to get news from both sides. The candidates section includes bios on McCain and Obama and their running mates, as well as links to their official blogs and information about where they stand on major issues. The polls section lets you take part in daily polls and share opinions with other iPhone users. As a bonus, you can register to vote through the app as well.
Campaign is available in the iTunes App Store for $0.99, which seems a bargain. There’s some debate in the user comments in the store whether the app is truly unbiased; some users feel the app doesn’t have the right mix of news outlets represented in its feeds. Also, at least according to one user, it loads too slowly when you want to read a full news item. However, comments are generally favorable, with a 3.5 out of 5 stars rating.
I’d be interested to hear from readers who have tried this app to see what you think. Or if you’ve tried any of the other political tracking apps for the iPhone or other devices. What technology or websites do you use to keep up-to-date on the latest developments in this intense political season? Leave a comment to let us know what you think.