Social media platforms hold the key to encourage people and push them to take an active part in raising the voice and selecting a right political representative. Understanding this, a number of portals like iForIndia and BribeBook have joined the community of World Wide Web to empower general public and start an online movement against corruption and unsuitable elected representatives.
But where most of them are limited to talk about corruption or highlight candidates’ background and track records, Voterite – a recently launched social media platform is envisioned to influence elections through peer-peer campaigning.
The idea is to fix the problem at the grass root level – which, according to Vikram, one of the founders of Voterite – can only be done by empowering citizens. Voterite is an attempt to talk the language of India’s youth population by leveraging social media and influence them to take active part in redefining the way leaders are elected.
“2014 is just the beginning of a very important milestone in political landscape. For the first time in India, educated youth can alter the result in over 170 MP constituencies” believes Vikram.
By being on the Voterite platform, one can influence friends and family to pick the right leader or party in each and every constituency of India. For example, one can be from Bangalore but can have friends in Delhi or Rajasthan that he/she can influence.
There are two problems being solved with Voterite:
1. When one reaches out to a friend on Voterite, the friend gets a snapshot view of all the candidates contesting and hence is empowered to make a more informed decision with regard to voting.
2. If motivated, the friend can then become a campaigner for a candidate or party of his / her choice and hence the cycle of influencing friends to make better decisions across India can continue.
The portal went live on Nov 14, 2013 with its beta version out in Nov 7, and since then its been adding an average of around 500 users daily. With the Delhi elections around the corner, the portal is witnessing a lot of activity around the Delhi region.
Self funded by the team so far, Voterite has now started reaching out to like-minded corporates and NGO’s for donations – to continue its operations.
“Indian political landscape is changing. In 2014 if 170 MP constituencies can have their fate determined by social media users. Imagine the impact it can have by 2019” added Vikram. Whether or not, portals like Voterite, manage to change the face of today’s Indian politics, they at least provide the general public with a social-political platform that we believe are necessary to question the accountability of government while pushing the democratic process in the right way.
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