There are plenty of reasons to vote: civic duty, desire to better your government, free sticker, get off work for a few hours on a Tuesday. But perhaps none are as compelling as the ability to use social media to brag to your friends that yes, you’re a good American—maybe better than they are.
Besides, as a September study in Nature showed, when Americans report on social media that they’ve voted, it significantly increases the number of their friends who vote. And while you could simply update your status to say “I voted,” these three apps help you brag with substantially more flair. And that’s the point, right?
Considering it’s otherwise creepy to check in at your old high school gym on Foursquare, the location-based social network unveiled an “I Voted” app Thursday. With with it, users can check in at the polls to receive an “I voted” badge. Moreover, using the app lets you be a part of something bigger: Foursquare uses Google’s Civic Information API to compile a realtime map, available at elections.foursquare.com, that shows where and when Foursquare users are voting.
Though Facebook already has an official “I voted!” button, digital rights activist group Fight For the Future’s Vote With Friends app takes that concept to the next level by introducing a more compelling element: shame.
Vote With Friends isn’t simply a tool to check brag that you made it to the polls. Using the slogan “If You Don’t Vote, All Your Friends Will Know,” the app allows your Facebook friends can check your account to see whether or not you’ve voted, and, presumably, publicly shame you if you don’t live up to your word.
3. Twitter and Google+
You know what’s boring? Your normal face on election day. Thankfully, Fight for the Future also has a solution: a service that adds a banner to the bottom of your Twitter, Google+, or Facebook profile that says “I’m voting,” or “I voted.” According to Fight for the Future’s stats, the app has enormous visibility: the people who have used it thus far have more than 1.7 million followers combined.
Photo via Wikimedia Commons