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How To Supplement Election Coverage? 241

Posted by kdawson
from the news-junkie-overload dept.
An anonymous reader asks "What information sources and social networking sites will you be using to supplement the election coverage on TV next Tuesday? I am ready with a big HDTV with Comcast, a Mac mini, and and an Xbox 360. I also have two laptops (one good for websites and one for streaming video), an old-school Blackberry, a 'regular' cell phone, a Nokia N810, a Squeezebox, and finally Sirius Satellite Radio. Which websites should I watch for live county results? I already know about the Twitter Vote Report for tracking and reporting voting issues and I already watch 'CNN Reporters' on Friendfeed for the national flair. What other Twitter accounts should I follow? Which urgent ones should I send to my phones? Which YouTube accounts or keywords I should subscribe to in Miro? What are the most popular sites for posting 'on-scene' videos — iReport, Flickr, something else? I know most local Fox affiliates are great about streaming, but is there a page that lists all of the streams, in case I need to quickly focus on one city or area? Basically, how would you configure all those gadgets?" This reader might find some guidance in what to focus on from a video produced by reader (and data modeler) Bruce Nash that lays out a predicted timeline for when the media will call each state, depending on when the polls close and how tight each race is expected to be.
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How To Supplement Election Coverage?

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  • So really... (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 01, 2008 @07:42PM (#25598595)
    How covered do you really have to be?
    • Re:So really... (Score:4, Insightful)

      by killproc (518431) on Saturday November 01, 2008 @08:21PM (#25598883)

      Might I recommend Xanax? It sounds like you're a bit wound up there, big fella...
    • Seeing that people get paid to do this nonsense for you, why don't you just watch one channel and let them do the work?

  • whoa there.... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by BWJones (18351) * on Saturday November 01, 2008 @07:42PM (#25598599) Homepage Journal

    "What information sources and social networking sites will you be using to supplement the election coverage on TV next Tuesday? I am ready with a big HDTV with Comcast, a Mac mini, and and an Xbox 360. I also have two laptops (one good for websites and one for streaming video), an old-school Blackberry, a 'regular' cell phone, a Nokia N810, a Squeezebox, and finally Sirius Satellite Radio. Which websites should I watch for live county results? I already know about the Twitter Vote Report for tracking and reporting voting issues and I already watch 'CNN Reporters' on Friendfeed for the national flair. What other Twitter accounts should I follow? Which urgent ones should I send to my phones? Which YouTube accounts or keywords I should subscribe to in Miro? What are the most popular sites for posting 'on-scene' videos â" iReport, Flickr, something else? I know most local Fox affiliates are great about streaming, but is there a page that lists all of the streams, in case I need to quickly focus on one city or area? Basically, how would you configure all those gadgets?"

    ........... Ummmm...... my suggestion to you is to vote, then leave all the gadgets behind. Go outside. Breathe some air. Find someone to throw a baseball back and forth to for a couple of hours. The election will turn out the way it will turn out regardless of how many feeds you keep.

    I voted a couple of weeks ago, so plan on biking to work as usual, working then coming home, eating dinner with my wife, watching a few minutes of election coverage, then am going to bed. When I wake up on Wednesday morning, my fervent hopes are that this election is a blowout and will not have to be decided again by the courts.

    • by seanadams.com (463190) * on Saturday November 01, 2008 @08:08PM (#25598797) Homepage

      Yes, get out of the house. How about going to a party, or hosting one? Instead of sitiing on your duff, you can drink, discuss, and celebrate/commiserate as the results come in. Much more interesting than trying to consume a dozen newsfeeds at the same time, whatever good that might do.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by maxume (22995)

        When given the choice of sitting on or drinking your duff, always drink it.

    • I completely agree. Sitting there glued to your TV on election night, watching as each vote gets counted, is hardly a productive use of your time. Cast your vote, go to sleep, and see the aftermath when you wake up the next day. Really, this election will not be decided Tuesday night, it will be very close and involve a lot of lawyers; in fact, both parties have already hired lawyers in Ohio, ready to contest what is likely to be an extremely close race.
    • Re:whoa there.... (Score:4, Informative)

      by Zadaz (950521) on Saturday November 01, 2008 @08:25PM (#25598919)

      Agreed.

      Though it's probably too late for this election, next time if you really want to be immersed in the electoral process you should become a volunteer at a nearby polling place. Rather than just drinking from the fire hose in a vain effort to feel connected, you could become an actual part of the process. You'll learn a lot more than you ever could at the sphincter end of a twitter feed.

    • Re:whoa there.... (Score:4, Insightful)

      by philspear (1142299) on Saturday November 01, 2008 @08:53PM (#25599131)

      Surely someone isn't just marking this thread down because the idea that you SHOULDN'T be following the news up-to-the-second is so offensive to them? I suspect hacking on the part of CNN.com.

      What possible use could you have for being THAT up to date? Even the media itself could really benefit from cooling down on the refresh rate, so to speak. Remember way back when they called the election for Bush, then had to take it back, then called it again, then took it back, then the supreme court decided? I remember watching CNN as the supreme court was ruling, they literally had reporters on the steps skipping around in the ruling, trying to figure out who won. ON LIVE TV. They looked like idiots.

      "Uh... so it says here... uh... Well justice... uh... scalia says 'the decision in this case came down to whether or not the evi'... no wait, that's not it. Um... well Mark, as you can see, we have not had time to read the ruling in depth. I hear my colleagues from the Fox news network cheering so that would indicate a Bush victory. No, I'm sorry, that was actually a fraternity from Georgetown drinking from what appear to be brown bags... Ooh, maybe the last page has a summary... no, I don't know what those words mean.... We're going to have to get back to you..."

      On live TV. I and most of america really wanted to know what the ruling was, but we could have waited 5 minutes for you to skim it and get the gist of it before fumbling around live.

      And it's not just because journalists often have egg on their faces when they report on things before they know what it is they're reporting on. The important points in a news story get lost in the chaos, cutting from story to story, cutting from a speech by someone who might know something to go live to something that's "breaking" only to find out, no, wait, that McCain supporter wasn't actually attacked by an Obama supporter who carved a B into her face, she did that herself.

      Sure it's breaking news, but ultimately, whatever they cut away from to cover that, was likely of much greater importance.

      If you're watching the race that closely, you're going to get all the unimportant fluff crap and miss understanding the larger picture.

      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by kent_eh (543303)
        Just wait for the newspaper [wordpress.com] to come out in the morning. They're always right.
        • Aw man, I thought of that and meant to mention it, then forgot! I'd have to point out that there were some other flaws going on there. The polling stopped a week before the election if I'm not mistaken, because of poor polling methods it was assumed that Dewey had it sewn up, the newspaper jumped the gun based on that partly. I wouldn't say that's a reason to stay up to the minute though, look at the 2000 election again, even WITH instant reporting, they called that one early.

  • Eh? (Score:5, Funny)

    by Warll (1211492) on Saturday November 01, 2008 @07:45PM (#25598625) Homepage
    "What other Twitter accounts should I follow?" Lol.... You actually want to hear what twitter has to say?
  • ... Is to go about my life, and check the web the next morning to see the results of all the issues I care about. I think treating the whole thing as a giant spectator sport is part of what creates the whole us-vs-them mentality that makes politics so divisive in this country.

    If you're just *itching* to know the results, though, why not set up a program to scrape results from CNN, and email your phone when they get called? Everything else on the news in between is just useless prattle.

  • I plan to spend Tuesday evening going from one "victory party" to another in Sarasota and Manatee Counties (Florida) with my Canon XH-A1 video camera, then to send all my videos to Channel 10 (local CBS outlet), then post them @ my own site, http://roblimo.com./ [roblimo.com.]

    You can do the same thing yourself, even if you don't have a hook-up with a local TV station or pro-quality video gear. Grab your cell phone with built-in vidcam, your Flip Video cam, your 1-CCD camcorder -- whatever you have -- and upload your video

    • by gclef (96311) on Saturday November 01, 2008 @08:43PM (#25599057)

      You might also want to do your own exit polls. As long as you're on public property, no one has the right to keep you from shooting video.

      This is very bad advice.

      While a school may be public property, if it's being used as a polling place you most certainly do not have the right to shoot video or poll people inside. If you want to do either of these things in or near a polling place, please (please, please, please) check with the poll workers at the polling place first. They will know what rules there are and what limits there are to video and exit polling. (There are procedures for what the media can & can't do in a polling place, but the most important one is: if the chief judge says "no", then you're not filming...and you need to ask first.)

      I have volunteered as a poll worker this cycle, and I'm really worried about getting into fights with people about the "Video the Vote" campaign. Video or photography inside the polling place is illegal in my state (I suspect it's illegal in all states, but I only know my state's law for sure). I don't want to get into these fights, but the Video the Vote folks have buried their CYA "please ask the poll workers" stuff in the middle of huge blocks of text that no one's likely to read, so I'm not optimistic.

      (By the way, the whole soft-shoeing of the need to check with the election judges by "Video the Vote" really pisses me off...the poll workers are going to have a tough enough time this cycle with the expected huge turnout. The last thing we're going to need is some zealot screaming voter suppression when we try to enforce the "no filming" law in the polling area.)

      </rant>

      In short, if you want to be the media creator, that's fine...you just need to play by the rules.

      • by Roblimo (357) Works for SourceForge on Saturday November 01, 2008 @09:22PM (#25599285) Homepage Journal

        The idea of an "exit poll" is to talk to voters outside the polling place after they've voted, not to intrude on the sanctity of the polling place itself.

        In other words, be on the sidewalk or other 100% public property.

        My polling place in Bradenton, Florida, is in the rec room of a large mobile home park, which is private property. Many other polling places around here are on property that belongs to various churches.

        As long as you stay on true public property -- that is, places to which the public has unimpeded access, you can film.

        One way to tell if you're in a legal spot as opposed to intruding on a polling place is to look at the placement of candidates' signs. There is typically a minimum allowable distance from the polling place for them. Use them as your guide to the "safe" distance. Beyond that, as long as you are on public property and not impeding traffic, neither an election judge nor a police officer has the right to stop you from filming.

        (I, too, have been an election judge.)

        • by PCM2 (4486)

          As long as you stay on true public property -- that is, places to which the public has unimpeded access, you can film.

          I'm really not so sure about that. I don't know the specific law (hence the not-sure)... but in my state (California), polling places have signage out in front that says you're basically not allowed to talk about election issues within XX number of feet of the polling place. It may sound like an infringement of personal liberties, but it seems like a good thing to me.

        • by gclef (96311)

          Fair enough. My concern was that the words "public property" can be interpreted to mean things like school grounds, libraries, etc, which are often used as polling places themselves...so I wanted to make it clear about talking to the election judges first in those places.

      • Suggestion... (Score:3, Insightful)

        by denzacar (181829)

        I don't want to get into these fights, but the Video the Vote folks have buried their CYA "please ask the poll workers" stuff in the middle of huge blocks of text that no one's likely to read, so I'm not optimistic.

        - Go to http://videothevote.org/resources [videothevote.org] and get the .pdf or .html version of the "Guidelines for Election Day Conduct" text.
        - Print it out like you would a poster-flyer on a single sheet of paper, with "Video the Vote" clearly visible.
        - Then take the sections 3 (Get Permission before You Film)

    • *News for Nerds-Stuff that matters*

      (no sarcasm intended!)
      Novel Concept(tm)! Good idea!
      I may be slow catching on, but to me, that is a cool idea, and a constructive reply to the article poster!

      Well done, sir! (stuff like this keeps me on /. after I think it may have 'jumped the shark'. Re-birth of 'faith in a failed humanity' delusion on my part, I suspect.)

      However....

      Keep in mind that gclef (96311) [slashdot.org] has a very informative and VERY valid reply [slashdot.org] that needs to be taken into account.(needs modded up to the top)

      I

    • by Darby (84953)

      As long as you're on public property, no one has the right to keep you from shooting video.

      That's a very irresponsible statement, Roblimo.

      No one has the right, but they do have the power and you could well be beaten and thrown into jail for it. Hell that could happen even if you're in your own home. That is the reality we now live in. I encourage you to go ahead with it, but don't delude yourself that you have any rights in America. Live like you will, but understand that there are consequences and that you

  • by Tom (822)

    I am ready with a big HDTV with Comcast, a Mac mini, and and an Xbox 360. I also have two laptops (one good for websites and one for streaming video), an old-school Blackberry, a 'regular' cell phone, a Nokia N810, a Squeezebox, and finally Sirius Satellite Radio. Which websites should I watch for live county results?

    And why, exactly, do you want all this information overload?

    You ask a question, but you omit the most important piece of information: Goal or purpose.

    The election results and any interesting details will be plastered all over the media. It'll be hard to miss anything important. So why go to any effort at all to increase information input? What are you processing the info for?

    Not that I don't agree the election result is important. It absolutely is. But "more information" does not equal better information.

    • Considering the media just pillages each other for information, I don't think it's going to be an information overload; rather an information echo echo echo echo.

  • by Cordath (581672) on Saturday November 01, 2008 @08:02PM (#25598751)
    ...you wouldn't need to check the results!
  • by Pilois (835353) on Saturday November 01, 2008 @08:10PM (#25598813)

    "I am ready with a big HDTV"

    I dunno about you all but I am PSYCHED about seeing EVERY PORE on John McCain's face during his concession speech. I mean, election coverage without picture-perfect high definition quality is just not acceptable.

    • by maz2331 (1104901)

      Or the HDTV shots of the riots when Obama loses?

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by socsoc (1116769)
        I know HD is usually more realistic than real life, but why not just join the riots?
        • by maz2331 (1104901)

          Let the National Guard handle those... if they happen. *

          Besides, why not just do it in 3D for really good realism? **

          * Please let no riots happen!
          ** 3D is really cool

          (Disclaimer: I like 3D so much, I built a camera.)

          • Re:Nah (Score:4, Insightful)

            by nomadic (141991) <nomadicworld@NoSPAm.gmail.com> on Saturday November 01, 2008 @11:21PM (#25599949) Homepage
            Let the National Guard handle those... if they happen. *

            Too bad they're all in Iraq.

            * Please let no riots happen!

            There shouldn't be riots if Obama wins, or if McCain wins fairly. If there's another 2000 situation and McCain wins a crooked election, then there probably SHOULD be riots. When you take away the fundamental right to vote then there aren't that many other alternatives.
            • by dpilot (134227)

              No mod points, flagging with a response, instead.

              Incidentally, as for fraud, there is relatively little evidence of "excess" voters. There have been fraudulent registrations in this cycle, but those were flagged as fraudulent in by Acorn themselves, who are legally obliged to turn in ALL registrations. But there appear to be decent mechanisms in place to protect the vote, itself. These findings on voter fraud were reported by a Republican appointee, by the way. (One of the 8 Federal attorneys fired.)

  • What is it you're trying to see: the outcome of the elections, or the action (or lack thereof)?

  • My plan is to watch the Daily Show/Colbert Report live hour-long special, then either watch CNN or turn off the TV and just wait for results in the morning, as I wish most news outlets would do.

    I will be browsing various sites through all this, but only a few of them will have ongoing political discussions, then there's Slashdot.

    It sounds like you're setting yourself up for information overload. Dear heavens, why?

  • by Joe The Dragon (967727) on Saturday November 01, 2008 @08:21PM (#25598887)

    DIRECTV Customers Count On Mix Channel For Election Night Coverage

    http://www.directv.com/DTVAPP/global/contentPageNR.jsp?assetId=3640094 [directv.com]

  • ... take the gf out to dinner, then go see a movie, then pick up some dessert on the way back. I figure whoever was elected on Tuesday will still be the President-elect on Wednesday, and the crowds should be smaller than usual to boot.

  • For some reason I am REALLY engergised by these US elections. I am UK resident and full time worker.

    I'd like to listen to as much as I can without compromising too much of my work week

    Which UK radio can I listen to at which times are going to keep me informed? And what UK time can I expect to keep my eyes opened for key results?

    • by AdamHaun (43173)

      Unless you're a night owl, the polls will close too late for you to follow along in the UK. Here's a list [swingstateproject.com] of times in the Eastern Standard time zone (GMT-5). The earliest states won't officially stop voting until midnight GMT, and many might stay open later to let more people vote. It'll take a few hours to finish counting the votes after that. In the event of a total Obama blowout, you might get a result by 2:00am GMT, but you're really better off waiting until the next morning. McCain is way behind in the

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Darby (84953)

      For some reason I am REALLY engergised by these US elections. I am UK resident and full time worker.

      Well, then you're an idiot. It's a choice between the Nazi traitor McCain and the other traitor who also voted for the "let the government spy on everyone, constitution be damned" act.

      Either way, fascism wins and America pisses on the graves of all of our WW2 vets. The sick part is some of them are still alive knowing they'll be resting in the piss of their nation in a big fuck you to their sacrifice.

    • by xaxa (988988)

      BBC Radio 4 have coverage from 0:00 to 5:20
      http://www.bbc.co.uk/radio4/news/pip/52l2g/ [bbc.co.uk]

      I don't own a radio, so the only radio I listen to is on DVB-T (digital TV, freeview). I don't know of any other decent stations than Radio 4 for news and current affairs.

  • viral marketing (Score:5, Insightful)

    by owlnation (858981) on Saturday November 01, 2008 @08:29PM (#25598955)
    This article is the 4th in 5 days that has been posted purely as viral marketing for twitter. The jerks that own that site must be running out of cash (hopefully). Editors, please STOP the twitter slashvertisments.
    • by game kid (805301)

      The jerks that own that site must be running out of cash (hopefully).

      Not really. Those important updates are brought to you by Linden Lab.

  • If they steal a third one, I can watch them unfold the story line.

    Otherwise, I can undoubtedly watch the most volatile melange of Freudian neurotic mechanisms seen in one place since Hilter's last days in the bunker.
     

  • Seriously. I live abroad and for the last year it has annoyed me GREATLY that every week there was at least one topic about the US election. And it has been progressively getting worse. I feel sorry for people in the US for probably having to suffer through this hell times ten because the coverage is total overkill. Just hold the elections. Tomorrow for all I care and then STOP with the coverage. I have had enough of Joe the Plumber and Sarah "you betcha" Palin and Obama's cousin twice-removed. Just stop. S

    • by opencity (582224)

      Who forces you to consume this news? It's the internet for $%#@ sake, google some tech stuff.

    • by KGIII (973947) *

      Perhaps you should click on the main page and then click on the "Politics" link. If you look at the top, near the /. logo, you should see and be able to identify the flag behind it. It is an American site, finding news about American politics in the news section of an American site should probably be expected this close to the election.`

  • I've already voted (absentee) since I will be out of the area.

    I'm going media free election day. No internet, no television, no radio. Is my being glued the tv/web going to change anything except my stress level?

    Wednesday, I will know.

  • by bcrowell (177657) on Saturday November 01, 2008 @08:48PM (#25599101) Homepage
    For anyone who doesn't want to sit through the entire (long) Flash presentation by Bruce Nash, here's a micro-summary. Basically, he predicts that it will be around 8 pm Pacific time that they call Virginia and Pennsylvania for Obama, at which point it will be clear that Obama has won.
  • "This reader might find some guidance in what to focus on, when, in a video produced by reader (and data modeler) Bruce Nash that lays out a predicted timeline for when the media will call each state, depending on when the polls close and how tight each race is expected to be. "

    Kdawson your english teacher is spinning in his or her grave.
    That paragraph sized sentence is a crime against humanity.

  • "Reader"? (Score:3, Funny)

    by mqduck (232646) <mqduck AT mqduck DOT net> on Saturday November 01, 2008 @09:20PM (#25599279)

    This reader might find some guidance in what to focus on, when, in a video[...]

    Isn't it a bit presumptions to assume that, just because he posts on Slashdot, he's actually a reader?

  • by bedroll (806612) on Saturday November 01, 2008 @09:22PM (#25599291) Journal
    What better way to spend election night than to watch with elation as the Fox people have to call state after state for Obama? Grab a beer and tune in to Fox. Maybe every now and then tune in to another organization to see if they've already called states for Obama that Fox is waiting to call because they just can't stand it.
    • by zippthorne (748122) on Saturday November 01, 2008 @11:05PM (#25599861) Journal

      You mean like in 2000 when the rest of the media declared gore the winner in FL an hour before the polls closed due to time zone problems? (i.e. an apparently institutional inability to .. subtract...)

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by argStyopa (232550)

      I'd like to have a webcam in your home, so I could see you swallow your tongue if he doesn't win.

      Sure, he may, and it seems like he's ahead in the polls. But the smugness of the Left is fairly sickening. I don't recall the whacky Right being that smug last election when Bush won somewhat comfortably.

      • by misanthrope101 (253915) on Sunday November 02, 2008 @05:33AM (#25601329)

        But the smugness of the Left is fairly sickening. I don't recall the whacky Right being that smug last election when Bush won somewhat comfortably.

        Then you have selective memory. I'm not blaming you, per se, nor am I saying that this is a right-wing phenomenon. People seem to have an inability to see their own faults, or those of those in their group, compared to faults of those who are less like them. To see right-wingers who consider themselves the only REAL patriots, the only REAL Christians, and the only REAL Republicans accuse others of smugness and hubris always serves to raise my eyebrows a bit. I see this stuff every single day, and I'm not all that leftish. If you don't think that Coulter and Limbaugh count as smug, you might want to have your meter re-calibrated.

        The problem is, in any population of any size, you're going to have idiots, jerks, charlatans, attention whores, etc. This applies to all factions, groups, subcultures, religions, political groups, everything. Human frailty and evil runs pretty evenly across the gamut. But we have a tendency to take these normal outliers to be the norm when it comes to groups to which we don't belong, while we're blind to the same types of individuals in our own group. It's a pretty sad phenomenon.

      • > I don't recall the whacky Right being that smug last election when Bush won somewhat comfortably.

        Actually, I was on the other side of the fence in 2004 and there was nothing to cheer about. Nobody was happy about Bush, they were just glad he wasn't Kerry. Though damn, I wish I had that vote back. He was elected to fix his own mess, not make more of them.

        Anyhow, with Obama, I'm *glad* to vote for him. I've supported him since the primaries. True, I've gone from thinking that McCain would be an okay

  • Perhaps you could watch CNN HD on Dish Network. After all, they have "MORE HD FOR LESS MONEY." Clearly this is a win/win! ;-)

  • Old school (Score:5, Insightful)

    by lucm (889690) on Saturday November 01, 2008 @09:38PM (#25599393)

    Miro? Laptops? Blackberry? Xbox? You probably have a bigger electromagnetic footprint than the power lines in my backyard...

    Do you really need all that Inspector Gadget weaponry? Why don't you coze up with an old AM radio, a bottle of gin and a beat-up deck of cards which has the perfect texture to play Solitaire in a dimly lighted living room? And a simple sheet where you strike or circle states as they are being called officially?

    Do you really see any value in being the first to send a twitter to your pals about such or such result, while everybody on Earth and beyond will be completely aware of the information in a matter of minutes or hours? There is no scoop on election night, only an annoying chase to be first to know.

    You want a real scoop? Here is one: while Obama is way up in polls, McCain will be the next president. Because the people that were supposed to vote for Obama were too busy subscribing to RSS feeds and setting up gamma on their webcam so they would be ready to upload their comments on youtube, and they neglected to go on and vote. While the good ol' God fearing folks were first in line at the booth and spent the election night sipping gin and playing Solitaire. That's exactly how Le Pen got so far in the French elections a few years back - not enough people casting their vote because the polls were on their side.

    There is just too much gadgets people. Time to pull a few plugs and get in touch with reality, where elections are won by people who get the most votes, not people who get the most Digg or website hits.

  • Umm, seriously? How exactly is that going to help you find election results?
  • The Obama campaign will almost certainly send out text message updates with election results from their point of view. Details (and other text commands) are at http://www.barackobama.com/mobile [barackobama.com]. If you want lots of updates text FOLLOW BARACKOBAMA to 40404 or use Twitter. (I can't find anything similar from the McCain campaign.) Or better yet you can get a life and volunteer now through Election Day (and even a little beyond) for your preferred candidate running at any level. It's far more enjoyable and inte
  • What You Need (Score:4, Informative)

    by NewbieV (568310) <victor...abraham ... ot@@@gmail...com> on Saturday November 01, 2008 @10:35PM (#25599707)

    Keep one window open to fivethirtyeight.com [fivethirtyeight.com]; one window for The Huffington Post [huffingtonpost.com], and one for Swampland [time.com].
    For TV, I'd go with MSNBC (Chuck Todd ftw), CNN and Fox, just to watch and see if their heads asplode :)

  • Hints (Score:3, Interesting)

    by S-100 (1295224) on Saturday November 01, 2008 @10:35PM (#25599711)
    Hints:

    Once the live coverage starts, look for clues from the "pundits", especially a change in attitude while the polls are open. The newsrooms have access to the incoming exit polls, but they do not share that with the audience while the polls are still open. That's how they can call a state immediately after the polls have closed - they had the info long before but withheld it.

    But, the pundits want to look good, so their "predictions" before the polls close will be strongly biased by the incoming exit poll information. That said, exit polls have been wildly inaccurate in the past two national elections and in some of the primaries this year.

    Also look at the mood of insiders that have access to the internal polling, such as Karl Rove. They will still be spinning, but they are unlikely to say anything that is directly contradictory to the polling data.

    When the race narrows down to a few states, find the web site for the state that posts the raw data. You'll get the counts there minutes before it's updated on the news networks.

    Then check in often on new sites like Drudge Report. Drudge as a policy ignores news embargoes, so you can often read a breaking story there first. Forget about the blog sites for fresh information, but they will be the nursery for the conspiracy theories to be launched by the losing side. This year, there's plenty to go around.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by DragonWriter (970822)

      That said, exit polls have been wildly inaccurate in the past two national elections and in some of the primaries this year.

      Its interesting how exit polling is so well-developed that significant divergence in actual results from exit polling is evidence of election fraud when discovered in monitored elections, but when it happens in US elections, it is assumed that there is something wrong with the polling, not the election itself.

  • Masturbate (Score:4, Insightful)

    by kaufmanmoore (930593) on Saturday November 01, 2008 @11:28PM (#25599987)
    Fire up your favorite porno and fire one off, seems appropriate for an instance where we will get screwed either way.
  • by RevWaldo (1186281) on Sunday November 02, 2008 @12:17AM (#25600231)
    http://www.democracynow.org/pages/election2008 [democracynow.org]

    Democracy Now! will be doing a special five-hour broadcast on November 4th from 07:00PM - 12:00AM ET to bring you the 2008 election results as they come in.
    The program will include live coverage of the results as the polls close, on-the-ground reports from across the country, reactions from across the globe, and running in-depth analysis and commentary from a wide range of guests you won't get anywhere else.
    On November 5th, the morning after, Democracy Now! expands to a two-hour broadcast from 08:00AM - 10:00AM ET to provide complete coverage of the election outcome.
    Please contact your local radio or TV station for local listings. There will also be a live video and audio stream of the show on our homepage at democracynow.org.
  • Ignore the posts telling you to 'get a life' etc ...
    Why not hook up all the gadgets? It's once every 4 years. If you like politics this is the world cup, only people will really live and die because of the outcome. Info overload can be fun.

    I'll have PBS on in the background while I get some work done. Unless there's gunfire in Ohio in which case I'll rush out to buy emergency supplies (read: bottle of Jameson)

  • by treebeard77 (68658) * <treebeard@treebe[ ].net ['ard' in gap]> on Sunday November 02, 2008 @02:25AM (#25600785)
    I'll admit I'm a bleeding heart liberal political junkie.

    on TV I'll be mostly MSNBC & PBS along with Daily Show/Colbert Report, CNN, and Current ( Al Gore's news channel )

    on the net:

    try DIGG's US Elections 2008 tabs both popular and upcoming.

    pollster.com - http://www.pollster.com/ [pollster.com] - is a good aggregater of polls it's what the TV guys use

    Hufington post updates/changes frequently and has lots of videos http://www.huffingtonpost.com/ [huffingtonpost.com]

    a news tab on igoogle with lots of feeds is good to have in another of your firefox tabs ( BBC, newspapers, TV channel websites, tec. )

    I like Salon http://www.salon.com/?source=refresh [salon.com] ( I have a long time premium account ) - it updates a lot, but not as fast as huffington

    This is a major, important election, I'll be watching on the HD big screen with friends. laptop atop my lap. I'll probably redo my "favotires" settings for the night.
  • How about just vote, then forget about it until later in the evening or the following day when the winners are announced. Unless you're working the polling places or on voter turnout initiatives there's nothing you can do but vote to affect the outcome, so why obsess about it?

  • Is there any kind of minimalist election result feed which will inform of only the states as they're officially called and the final result? For example twitter or IM.

    I don't want to spend hours watching it on TV, but I do want to know the results as they're called.

  • And then blow up parliament.

At the source of every error which is blamed on the computer you will find at least two human errors, including the error of blaming it on the computer.

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