Orbán’s Speech with Twitter Feedback


The number of hashtags, tags, links and other sort of referring to the parliamentary elections in Hungary is increasing as we are getting closer and closer to the first round (April 11). Four years ago blog was the new buzzword of internet and politics, people were excited to read the posts of the former PM, Ferenc Gyurcsány.

Now Hungarian politicians are competing for the most internet friendly politician title. Almost everyday there’s an article which is rounding up the social media achievements of the parties and the PM candidates. Of course Facebook is one of the main interfaces of the fight: How many fans does the other former PM, Viktor Orbán (FideszKDNP) have? Why has Attila Mesterházy (MSZP) so few? What’s the goal of those young electors who created an “I love Bokros Lajos” (MDF) page? And what does the “Jobbik? No!” group reflect?

The new year is a good reason to confuse the voters with annual evaluation speeches. Though people are mostly skeptical about these, they are listening to them. Probably they are still hoping to hear something new. Or to experience something new. Today the first didn’t happen but the second did.

Viktor Orbán’s speech was being streamed live on a website embedding tweets with #evertekelo (“annual evaluation”) hashtag and two buttons for on the spot feedback. Whatever anyone thinks about politics, it was an important event in the history of election campaigns in Hungary. The first time ever for using this kind of IT support to a public event. The voter who usually uses his internet connection for watching TV just went to the website, and even though there was a 3-4 seconds difference between the internet stream and the television broadcast, he preferred to stay on the site because he could participate in the event.

Orbán used a joke for criticizing the work of the party governing since 2002: once the Hungarian composer, Zoltán Kodály is staying at a friend’s place where he has to listen to a lady playing the violin, he’s asking the woman how long had she been playing the violin. The woman’s saying she had already been playing for eight years, but why the question. Kodály’s reply: because you could forswear all those eight years. Those who liked the joke just had to push the “like” (Y) button, and their vote appeared on a diagram. A twitterer mentioned it was like a click game. Which party’s electors are the best in clicking the button “like” and “dislike”?

Those who wanted to share their thoughts through Twitter with the link to the site and the hashtag, there was a pale blue t-button. Afterwards the tweet appeared in the embedded feed. It’s still working, since the speech is available on the site for those who couldn’t attend.

Virgo, the company which created this special live stream on behalf of the news site called [origo] stated that the diagram was not a representative sampling, they just wanted to show Hungarian netizens a new experience. However in the last paragraph of their description they shared an e-mail address for those who are interested in this kind of solutions. Do you remember Mark Zuckerberg promoting Facebook polls last year in Davos?


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