WUFT News

Amateur pundits take to social media to weigh in on debate performances

By on October 5th, 2012

The first presidential debate of the 2012 election season is still generating hashtags and hits on social media sites across the Internet, from criticisms of moderator Jim Lehrer to quips from fact-checking machines.

Poynter Institute contributor Tracie Powell said she thinks social media played a huge role in the aftermath of this debate. She said viewers are simultaneously using Internet-enabled devices to Tweet while watching a live event on TV, like the Superbowl.

“Whereas with the Superbowl, people are making their comments and reading other people’s comments,” she said. “With the debate, people actually went to Twitter to find out the truth about what the candidates were saying on that stage.”

Powell said fact-checking was the most important media development as the debates raged on live from Denver.

“The debates are important because they’re supposed to give the American public an opportunity to see the candidates challenged on some of the things they say, some of the assertions they make,” she said. “They’re supposed to give us the opportunity to see the candidates square off against one another so to speak. So in that respect, I think the debates still do serve an important purpose.”

However, some pundits and social media users criticized Lehrer for a poor job done as moderator. Powell said the candidates ate up his time to ask questions and prod the candidates more after their responses.

“He didn’t get to cover all of his topics,” she said. “They were only supposed to have two minutes to respond to questions and they were supposed to have discussions moderated by Mr. Leherer, that didn’t happen in the time allotted. And I know there was a lot of controversy over how he moderated the debate.”

She said while some argued there wasn’t enough diversity between the three moderators, event organizers do select moderators who perform selflessly and without showmanship.

“Most importantly, they want someone who doesn’t have an ego, someone who won’t become the news, someone with the understanding that the candidates and the American public are the focus, not them as the moderator,” she said.

Kelly Price edited this story online.


This entry was posted in Politics and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.
 

More Stories in Politics

Charlie Crist spoke at UF on Wednesday. He touched on the importance of voting and education policy in his speech.

UF College Democrats Rally in Support of Charlie Crist on Campus

Members of the community gathered in Pugh Hall on Wednesday to support Charlie Crist in the 2014 gubernatorial election.


Governor Rick Scott urges attendees of a rally in Gainesville to vote early and to encourage others to do the same. The stop was one of many on a Get Out the Vote bus tour on October 28th, 2014.

Scott Rallies Voters On Bus Tour As Election Nears

Governor Rick Scott continued his “Get Out the Early Vote” bus tour on Tuesday with a stop in Gainesville at David’s Real Pit BBQ to rally voters and encourage them to head to the polls early.


Early Voting

Early Voting Has Begun

Bradford county joins Levy county Monday in opening their doors for early voting. Alachua county will begin early voting Wednesday and Marion county on Thursday. These are the few counties that will have early voting until every county is open [...]


The City of Gainesville Commission tested a “phone-conference” town hall meeting. This allows residents to listen, and participate in, town hall meetings from the comfort of their own home.

City Commission Tests Telephone Town Hall Meeting

In an effort to better connect with residents, the Gainesville City Commission tested a “phone-conference” town hall meeting yesterday. Over 23,000 landlines were called.


Steve McGriff, 63, from Hog Valley, Fla., waves a sign showing support for Medical Marijuana outside of John Morgan's "Yes On 2" bus on Sept. 10, 2014.

Language on Medical Marijuana Amendment Fuels Debate

The wording of Amendment 2 for the legalization of medical marijuana in Florida has sparked debate as the November vote approaches. John Morgan of Morgan & Morgan spoke at The Swamp Restaurant in support of the amendment.


Thank you for your support

WUFT depends on the support of our community — people like you — to help us continue to provide quality programming to North Central Florida.
Become a Sustainer
I want to support FM 89.1/NPR
I want to support Florida's 5/PBS
Donate a Vehicle
Day Sponsorship Payments
Underwriting Payments