Election time is full of chaos; endless updates on all forms of digital and print media, political debates in online forums and on social media platforms, the desire to check our mobile devices anytime and anywhere to check up on the stats.
Mixing live events, such as U.S. presidential debates and election night, with the availability of mobile devices has spawned a term called “second screen phenomenon.” This occurs when a person is not only watching television, but at the same time also utilizing another mobile device, perhaps to complement the program they are watching.
PEW Research has found that 27% of respondents watching election night not only used online sources, but also television to get their updates on the matter.
Not only do these mobile devices allow users to be updated on the most current happenings, but also add to monitor media responses, fact check the debate, follow live reactions of different reporters, and to add to the live social media buzz on platforms such as Twitter and Facebook.
This second screen phenomenon suggests that we are being enabled and encouraged to consume news. It suggests that our mobile devices, such as our phones and tablets, are tools that can help us to stay informed of the news and to consume news more easily than ever before.
Do you find yourself taking part in the second screen phenomenon?