Social Media pushing people to Register to Vote

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ERIE, Pa. (Erie News Now) – The deadline to register to vote in New York State is October 14, and traditional efforts to get people to the polls are on. However, those traditional events don’t draw near the numbers as efforts online.

Tuesday was National Voter Registration Day, and nearly every social media platform is inundated with messages and links urging you to register to vote.

“Convenience is really important, especially when it’s getting more and more difficult to get those volunteers to man those types of tables [at traditional voter registration events,]” said Brian Sheridan, communications professor at Mercyhurst University.

He says the social media platforms, themselves, are not taking a political stance with either party in encouraging to people to register to vote. “Platforms, they may give lip service in the importance of voting, but really what they want is engagement. They want people online as long as they can,” said Sheridan.

Regardless, those social media efforts are working. “That’s where young people spend their days, on their phone, and anything you can do to make it easier for them, because they have to get involved in the process. The easier you make it for them, the more likely it is that they will register,” said Sheridan.

The deadline for voter registration is Oct. 14 and early voting starts on Oct. 29 and runs through Nov. 6. Most polling locations will be open on weekends from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on weekdays.

To register to vote, regardless of where you live in New York, you can visit your local New York DMV or fill out an electronic voter registration form. Your voter registration is then transferred to local county.

If there are any issues with an application, the individual will be notified by their local county.


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