Voter.com – Apple iReview

From an August 29, 2000 review of the Voter.com web site by Apple iReview:

Of the slew of political portals fighting for prominence on the Web, Voter.com stands out as one that may actually have a life that transcends presidential campaigns. Backing up its news, polls and resources with serious political and journalistic firepower, Voter.com warrants a bookmark from both the public and its representatives.

What’s behind the scenes distinguishes Voter.com as much as what’s on the home page. From its top executives to its staff writers, the site is peopled with seasoned political reporters, experienced activists and campaign veterans of all political stripes. The site’s executives include Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter Carl Bernstein and former Christian Coalition executive director Randy Tate, while exclusive columns come from such stalwarts as Eleanor Clift, Tucker Carlson and Jack Germond.

As on similar sites, Voter.com links to news stories and columns from many sources, but it does a noticeably better job of presenting the material. Under the home page’s Best of the Web section, users can scan headlines from campaign news, issue-related stories, 100 national columns and the day’s editorials. Jumping to any of these areas provides story summaries — with links — nicely organized by general subject. There’s simply no need to go elsewhere for political news and commentary. The recent launching of a Spanish-language version of the site, Español.Voter.com, is also worthy of applause.

Voter.com makes it easy to search for candidates by name or state. The Legislation section keeps track of activity in the House and Senate, providing summaries of bills and their process, along with a searchable archive of what’s been signed into law. A reader can also launch a political fight of his own in the Activism section, creating a group to attract voters with a common concern to chat and take action. While there are currently more than 1,000 such groups, the site’s adjacent message boards are woefully empty.

What’s disconcerting is that political candidates and organizations that aren’t Voter.com clients — those who don’t pay a fee — have pages bereft of information. There’s nothing wrong with charging for a presence — Voter.com is in it for the money, after all — but it makes the site seem disingenuous in its efforts to present balanced information. There’s no excuse for the site not clearly explaining this to users.


Share