Study: 26 pct in US used cell phones for activism

December 23, 2010 By DANA WOLLMAN , AP Technology Writer

(AP) -- If you this voted fall, there's a good chance you were texting about it.

Twenty-six percent of adult Americans used their cell phones to encourage others to vote in November's mid-term elections or to report back on conditions at their local voting sites, among other political activities, according to a issued Thursday by the Pew Internet & American Life Project.

In particular, 14 percent said they used their phones to tell others that they voted, while 12 percent used their handsets to receive updates. Another 1 percent used an election-themed app to keep posted.

If respondents used their phones to take photos and videos related to the election or contributed money to a campaign, they, too, were counted among the 26 percent who used their phones for political purposes during the election season.

Pew did not measure how likely users were to share their thoughts over social networks such as Facebook and Twitter - favored tools among many of the candidates running for office.

The November survey found that men and women were about as likely to use their phones to send political messages. But it reported more use of phones for politics among the young, affluent and college-educated. Pew also said its respondents voted equally for Democratic and Republican candidates.

Pew is quick to note that while the majority of American adults - 82 percent - own a cell phone, only 40 percent turned out to vote this year.

It also noted that this was the first time it had asked questions about use of cell phones in a mid-term election, so there are no comparable data for previous non-presidential elections.

The survey of 2,257 U.S. adults, including 1,918 cell phone users, has a margin of sampling error of plus or minus 2.4 percentage points. The survey was conducted in English and Spanish and included calls to cell phone numbers, a technique that allows the inclusion of households that no longer have landline phones.

Explore further: Survey: 26 pct of Americans get news via phone


Related Stories

Texting on the rise among US adults: Pew survey

September 3, 2010

More American adults are texting but they are not tapping out nearly as many messages per day on their cellphones as teenagers, according to a new survey from the Pew Research Center.

Recommended for you

Making 3-D imaging 1,000 times better

December 1, 2015

MIT researchers have shown that by exploiting the polarization of light—the physical phenomenon behind polarized sunglasses and most 3-D movie systems—they can increase the resolution of conventional 3-D imaging devices ...

US ends bulk collection of phone data

November 30, 2015

The US government has halted its controversial program to collect vast troves of information from Americans' phone calls, a move prompted by the revelations of former intelligence analyst Edward Snowden.


Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.