"Ad Hawk," "Super PAC App"
There are apps like "Shazam" that allow users to hold a phone up to the radio to identify a song, and now there are two apps that do the same thing for presidential campaign ads — "Ad Hawk" by the Sunlight Foundation and "Super PAC App" by Glassy Media.
They both work in similar ways. Users hold the mobile device up to an ad on TV or the computer and the app then, based on the audio in the commercial, identifies that commercial, shares what group paid for the ad and then offers up a bit more information on that group.
"Ad Hawk" tells the funding group's mission statement and where its money has been going.
"Super PAC App" also shows where the money is going, lets users rate the ad and also gives some info on the claims made in the ad.
When they work, these apps can let users know where these campaign ads are coming from. Truth be told, though, they do not quite have the accuracy of "Shazam."
Both apps are free, but "Ad Hawk" is for iOS and Android devices and the "Super PAC App" is for iOS only.
Xbox Live's Election 2012 Hub
Video gamers out there do not have to step away from their consoles for election news, as Microsoft has just launched on Xbox Live an "Election 2012 Hub." There, users can get election news, learn facts about the candidates, register through "Rock The Vote," participate in live, daily polling and also watch plenty of video clips.
Microsoft says by bringing content like debates or town halls to a console that is inherently interactive it will give users a chance to not just consume the news but also participate in the dialogue.
The Election 2012 Hub is up on Xbox Live right now, but users need to have Gold Membership to access certain video features.