Boise Votes 2011: Social Media Just for Fun or Election Tool?

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Social media can be good for spying on old classmates, catching up with old friends and flames, and even businesses have been using the new technology to retail advantages. But will it be the key to reaching an untapped source of young voters? Can it help boost polling place numbers? The newest Boise City Council Member Ben Quintana thinks so and was active in his use of social media in his race for the seat.

At Bardenay Tuesday night, while awaiting election results, BW caught up with local musician James Orr.

“I think it reached a whole new demographic,” said Orr of Quintana’s social media campaign. The local crooner also divulged that this was his first time voting in a city election, in part because of Quintana’s outreach.

Social media may be responsible for Orr’s first blot on the public record, too. While voting Tuesday, he decided to write himself in on the ballot and then posted, “Might have written myself in for mayor...”

A pic Orr snapped of his ballot.
  • James Orr snapped this photo of his ballot, the first he's cast in a municipal election.

“And then I think I may have got four or five votes,” said Orr. It might be a silly example but in the six hours that followed, he mustered some support. But Orr was just having a little fun.

“I was not really running for mayor. I just thought I didn’t know enough about any of the other candidates to give them my vote, but I thought I know enough about myself that I would vote for myself for any of those positions,” said Orr.

Orr with friend and fellow voter August Freeman.
  • James Orr awaits election results Tuesday night with friend and fellow voter August Freeman.

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