Trade Resources Industry Views Wireless Smartphone and Tablet Users Helped Raise Funds and Support in 2012

Wireless Smartphone and Tablet Users Helped Raise Funds and Support in 2012

Computerworld-Wireless smartphone and tablet users helped both presidential candidates raise funds and support in 2012,while mobile computing contributed directly to President Barack Obama's edge in Tuesday's presidential election.

Most exit polls show Obama won 60%of the voters aged 18 to 29.That age group also uses smartphones and other mobile phones and tablets in greater numbers than other age groups.

"Mobile computing really did make a difference in the presidential election,"said Darcy Wedd,president of Payvia,a company that provided Web widgets to allow fast campaign contributions from both Obama's and GOP challenger Mitt Romney's mobile applications."It drew more people to the polls and that was a younger demographic,and that would have helped the re-election of President Obama."

Obama,a Democrat,won just over 50%of the national vote to Romney's 48%.The president's margin was larger in the Electoral College.

Wedd said that Obama had four years as the incumbent to build up social media support on both mobile and desktop devices,including email and text-messaging databases."Obama already had a captive audience,and you'd see him tweeting supporters to contribute$10,and then have celebrities and athletes retweeting that contribution request,"Wedd said in an interview.

Payvia had to seek permission from the U.S.Federal Election Commission to allow political contributions to either candidate through mobile apps,over the mobile Web or through SMS(text)messages.Billing was done through wireless carriers,after Payvia set up relationships with all the carriers in North America and several globally.In most cases,users would text a keyword to a number to contribute a set amount.

Toward the end of the campaign,Payvia introduced simplified technology that would have allowed a smartphone user to open a campaign smartphone app,go to a donate button,then make a donation with a quick confirmation of the user's phone number from the carrier.When the confirmation was clicked,a contribution would have been made with the charge appearing on next month's cellular bill.That feature was not ready in time for this year's election,but will be available in the future,.

Wedd wouldn't disclose how much either campaign raised using mobile contributions,saying only:"Romney did lose,and that's a good way to connect the dots."

In round numbers,Obama's campaign said it raised about$1 billion for his campaign,with some 10 million Americans making individual contributions to the president.

The more notable impact of mobile campaign contributions was centered around specific events,such as the first presidential debate in October.Without disclosing the amount,Payvia said there was a 96%spike in mobile giving on Romney's mobile site during that debate on Oct.3.The site included a link to donate via mobile directly underneath a video stream of the debate.(During that same debate,10 million tweets about the event were made,most from mobile devices,Payvia said.)

IDG News Service-Twitter appears to have reset the passwords for an undetermined portion of its user base because of a possible security breach.

"Twitter believes that your account may have been compromised by a website or service not associated with Twitter.We've reset your password to prevent others from accessing your account,"read an email with a timestamp of around 2:30 a.m.ET Thursday.

The notice has left many users perplexed as to if it was a real request,or a forgery from online tricksters.

"Did anyone else get an email from Twitter saying account may have been compromised by 3rd party site or plugin?"asked journalist Dan Gillmor,in a short message posted on Twitter.Numerous people on Twitter have posted messages about receiving such a notice.

Twitter had posted no additional information about a security breach as of late morning Eastern Time,either on its blog or as a status update from its official account,and did not reply to a request for comment by then.

The email proves a link to an SSL(Secure Socket Layer)password reset page on Twitter,as well as to a page where users can check what third-party applications have access to their Twitter accounts.The reset page will not let users reuse their old passwords.Twitter provides access to third-party applications with the permission of its users.

While the email appears to have come from the Twitter domain and provides links that lead to the site,users should always double check any link sent in email to assure it is not a disguised link to a malicious site.

"Always check that your browser's address bar is on a website before entering your password.Phishing sites often look just like Twitter,so check the URL before entering your login information!,"The Twitter email warned.

The TweetSmarter Twitter news and tips site has advised that Twitter usually sends out reset messages whenever large numbers of Twitter accounts have been hijacked.

Contribute Copyright Policy
Smartphone and Tablet Users Helped Obama Win