March 20, 2010

More Politicians Using Social Media

Not long after her April 2008 election to the Amherst School Committee, Catherine A. Sanderson thought she’d create a simple, little blog to keep voters informed about what the committee was doing and to gain voter feed back.

“Those were my noble goals,” she said of the origin of her blog,
myschoolcommitteeblog.blogspot.com.

In a matter of months, her simple, little blog grew and grew to the point of becoming neither simple nor little.

Her two to three posts per month grew to as many as 20, the monthly visitors tally reached as high as 10,000, and individual posts could generate as many as 150 reader comments.

It's become a lot of work, but Sanderson said the blog has more than accomplished its original purpose. “I ran on a platform of more communication and more transparency,” Sanderson said. “It’s hard to not communicate and not be transparent when you’re on a blog telling people, ‘Here is how I am going to vote and why.’”

Sanderson is one of many politicians at the local, state and federal levels who are realizing the importance of using new media to connect with the voters.

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