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Oct 4th 2012

AOL's Global to Local Experiences for the 2012 Presidential Debates


AOL made news last week with Google and Yahoo! when the Commission on Presidential Debates announced the three Internet giants would combine forces to reach a massive audience with a digital initiative, "The Voice Of," an online destination for the presidential debates.

Last night, teams across AOL also collaborated to demonstrate the editorial and distribution force that AOL's combined brands can deliver. AOL.com and HuffPost Live streamed the presidential debate, providing unique coverage, commentary, analysis and opinion across AOL.com, the Huffington Post, HuffPost Live, Patch, DailyFinance and other AOL sites. More than 20 AOL brands joined this unprecedented effort, which also included more than 30 Patch live viewing parties across key battleground states, four live chatrooms on HuffPost Live with specific focus areas - Inside Politics, Comedy, Young Voters and En Español - and an undecided voter focus group with Luntz Worldwide in our AOL Studio at 770 Broadway.


Over 400,000 engaged viewers watched the livestream, and we received over 33,000 comments on The Huffington Post and HuffPost Live. We had an estimated 240 million impressions total on Twitter, where more than 30 editors shared updates from 11 different AOL and Huffington Post Twitter accounts.*

Didn't hear about the topic you care about last night? Starting Friday at 9am, you can submit your questions through AOL, Google and Yahoo for the chance to hear the answer at the 2nd Presidential debate on October 16th.

*Source: AOL Internal Data

Mar 7th 2012

HuffPost Launches 'Change My Mind'

A new feature, "Change My Mind," launches this week on many HuffPost verticals that lets bloggers debate each other on timely topics. But thanks to a new tool, readers get to weigh in on which argument is strongest.

Here's how it works: in the "Change My Mind" articles, readers see a premise with which they can agree or disagree. After they click the "agree" or "disagree" button, a window pops open displaying the expert bloggers' opposing views. After reading pro and con arguments, readers then click "agree" or "disagree" again. The debater who convinces the largest number of readers to change their opinion on the issue wins the debate.

The tool, spearheaded by Conor White-Sullivan, who developed an online community platform acquired by HPMG last fall, provides a simple interface for editors to easily create the presentation. (Conor recently made Forbes' list of "30 under 30" rising stars in media.) Also instrumental in the launch of the tool is Menachem Dickman, Joe Moore and Dan Fratean, all of whom helped engineer it, and Daniel Lee, who designed the beautiful interface. Without them, the tool would not exist.

In a blog post introducing the new platform, Conor writes, "A Google search of any contentious question will yield millions of results, but in that sea of information it can be difficult to separate what's trustworthy from what's not. And even when we have navigated past the conspiracy theories, truthiness, and smoke and mirrors, it can be all too easy to confine ourselves to echo chambers where we only hear the people we already agree with."

Among HuffPost sections debuting the new feature: HuffPost Green's "Bill McKibben And Ezra Levant Debate Keystone XL Pipeline Pros And Cons"; HuffPost UK's "Can Stripping Ever Be Feminist?"; HuffPost San Francisco's "San Francisco America's Cup: Great For The City, Or One Big Mess?"; HuffPost Comedy's "Is Twitter Bad For Comedy?"; HuffPost Travel's "Do New Airfare Rules Help Or Hurt Consumers?", and many more.

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