Facebook/Meet The Press Debate: A preview

6:31 PM, Jan 6, 2012   |    comments
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MANCHESTER, N.H. (NEWS CENTER) -- Politicians wouldn't get very far without being social. So it makes a lot of sense that the most social medium of 2012 is also where the candidates will be debating this weekend. Facebook, in a partnership with NBC News and Meet The Press, will host the first social media presidential debate this Sunday. We spoke with host of "Meet The Press", David Gregory, about why it was important to team up with Facebook, the biggest name in social media.

"Look, it's a great opportunity for us to do something that we try to do on the program a lot which is recognize that while we're having a conversation, on Meet The Press, there is often a conversation going on digitally, where people are watching the program and connecting in real time and making judgments about the answers and the guests. So this is an opportunity, in the course of a debate to say -- hey, we're out here connecting to each other via Facebook. We have questions for the candidates. And by the way we can react real time to how the debate is going and get our voices heard in the middle of the debate by connecting directly with us. So the partnership from that point of view makes great sense."

Leading into this debate, Facebook has been carefully gauging the mood of voters in both Iowa and New Hampshire, but also across the country. By using Facebook, users have been commenting on the Meet The Press page and asking exactly what they want to see in the debate. Also they've been talking with each other too as they post comments. Facebook and NBC have also been asking voting-age users in specific key areas what they think are the key issues going into the debate:

Economy 58%
Federal Deficit 19%
Healthcare 11%
Illegal Immigration 6%
Foreign Policy 5%

While the core of the data is coming from people they surveyed in New Hampshire and Iowa, they are allowing anyone to pose a question to the candidates on the Meet The Press Facebook page.

The debate will be live at 9am Sunday morning on WCSH 6 and WLBZ 2, but voters can also watch the debate live on Facebook right on the Meet The Press Facebook page and the Facebook politics page too. During the debate, Facebook is also inviting users to share questions for the candidates and connect live with other users.

For more information on the Facebook\Meet The Press debate check out their Facebook page here: MEET THE PRESS 


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