Mobile video journos boost Liverpool polls coverage - local elections round-up

The Liverpool Daily Post and Echo have employed a number of new digital tools to provide instant updates and interactive options as part of their online coverage of today’s local elections.

Apart from live blog updates from reporters at each of the 10 counts in their area, three of the counts are to be staffed by video journalists using mobile phone technology to stream updates on liverpooldailypost.co.uk and liverpoolecho.co.uk.

Daily Post editor Mark Thomas said: ‘Our first attempt at online, as-it-happens election coverage last year was well-received, viewed by around 4,000 people overnight.

‘That was prior to the ground-breaking relaunch of the Post and Echo websites. Our web traffic on both sites has increased massively in the last year and we are in a unique position to provide a depth of coverage which no other media outlet in the region can rival.”

Yesterday the Evening Standard, in response to the relatively complex voting system, ran a ‘Complete Guide to Voting’detailing the various outcomes of different first and second choice vote combinations in the London Mayor race.

The Standard today ran a final poll today showing Boris Johnson’s lead over Ken Livingstone for the London mayoral race at six points.

Tomorrow (Friday) the Standard will be running a special edition carrying all the results announced at time of going to press.

A reader poll on the Standard’s Mayoral Elections website today showed Johnson leading Livingstone by 45 per cent to 15 per cent in terms off online votes cast.

Free daily thelondonpaper also tackled the issue of possible voter confusion yesterday with a two-page spread on how to vote.

It also carried a ‘Dear Readers’section with last-minute campaigning pleas from Livingstone and Johnson.

Although there are 5.5 million registered voters in London, only 37 per cent of these turned out to vote in 2004.

Thelondonpaper’s news editor Mark Wilkinson said that the paper assumed their readers were ‘grown up enough to make up their own minds”, so instead of taking a partisan view the title’s front page said yesterday: ‘For the Sake of Our City… Vote”.

Reporters from thelondonpaper are following every movement of the major candidates today and published up-to-the-minute blog postings.

Reporter John Dunne, following Ken Livingstone, posted at 11.03am: ‘He popped into a perfume shop – perhaps sensing the sweet smell of success in the election?”

The Islington Gazette this week asked the ‘big four’ Mayoral candidates what their policies would mean for Islington and Camden, including what they think should be done about the open drugs market in Camden Town.

The final question posed to all four candidates was “Apart from London, which other world city do you most admire and why?”. Sian Berry chose Copenhagen, Boris Johnson went with New York, Ken Livingstone praised Paris and Brian Paddick selected Oslo.

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