We were delighted to read the news this morning that David Cameron and his team at number 10 are trialing an application which will pull real-time data from social media and other sources to aid with decision making.
The application will give the PM an at-a-glance view of how the country feels about him and his government. What better way to get close to what the people want than to tap into the conversations they are having in real time?
Reading the article on the BBC website (http://bbc.in/WJOWIu) we were also shocked by the opinions of Dominic Campbell, founder of FutureGov, who seemed to see no benefit to the application. I am sure that no one is really under the illusion that the Prime Minister will exclusively use social media to govern his decisions, but having access to this wealth of data on public opinion, perception and feeling right at ones finger tips can’t fail to be useful…
Of course the concept of a dashboard is not unusual, but it is great to see Mr Cameron and his team taking a leap of faith and tap into the rich vein of conversation through social media (and other sources).
For those of you with a thirst for data, you may also find this article published on Forbes a few days ago thoroughly interesting – detailing Hootsuite’s social media command center for the US Election. This quote from Matt Switzer, VP Partnerships & Corporate Development at HootSuite is particularly on topic “Social media has become an incredible barometer of public opinion, and the public expresses more opinion during elections than almost any other time “.
Hootsuite 2012 Election Tracker
Social election anyone?