7 May 2015

Election 2015: I’m a Voter so #IVoted

As party leaders head to their local polling stations, millions of people take to Facebook and Twitter to let their friends know they have voted, encouraging others to do the same.

The main party leaders were all out early, heading for their local polling stations with the media in attendance to record the event.

But many other voters were publicising their own involvement in the democratic process by making use of special features developed by social media outlets.

Almost a million and a half Facebook users had clicked on the site’s “I’m a voter” button, while over 55 thousand Twitter users who used the top-trending hashtag “IVoted”, saw an icon showing a box with a tick appear on their tweet.

Some UK voters reported queues at the ballot station, in one case allowing an undecided voter more time to ponder who to vote for:

Facebook says it believes that such involvement can increase voter turnout.

Facebook I'm voting graphic

In 2012 a study carried out by the journal Nature found that 300,000 people went to the polls in the US because they had seen news of their friends voting on the social network.

Elsewhere on Twitter the hashtag #Dogsatpollingstations triggered a pet-loving slant on the day’s events.

While some enterprising business people have used the day for a bit of election-themed advertising: