Facebook has showcased a new feature that will help people vote in the presidential election 2016. The website's "Vote Planner" tool will provide users information about the ballot and election issues, helping them vote with ease.
"We are encouraging civic engagement because we want to make it easier for people to participate and have a voice in the political process. By now, we’ve all heard more than enough about the presidential candidates in this election. We want to help people get information about the candidates and issues all the way down the ballot," Jeremy Galen, product marketing manager at Facebook, told USA Today.
The voter roll will be presented on the social network in a horizontal scroll where users can click on the "issues" tab to view the candidates' announced policy positions, while the "endorsement" tab will let users endorse a candidate, see who else has endorsed the same candidate and add the candidate to their favorites. The website will also provide users the option to support a specific ballot initiative even if they don't support the candidate running it.
Facebook will show information including presidential candidates, as well as candidates for statewide races to users who will provide their local address for accessing the information. Users will also have control over who sees the data, similar to the control they have over their regular Facebook posts. If users choose to make the information public, their Facebook friends will be able to see it on their vote planner.
The USA Today report added that Facebook reminded its users aged 18 and above to register before the elections, which resulted in 2 million more registered voters. Nine states credited Facebook with dramatic increase in voter registration. The social network also broadcast the presidential debates live. Presidential candidate Donald Trump's campaign even runs a nightly "Trump Tower" Facebook Live show.
Google also launched a similar search-based feature Oct. 13 that lets users find their voting booth and locate their ballot.