Facebook Launches Town Hall Feature To Make It Easier To Reach Out To Elected Officials
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Facebook has launched a new Town Hall feature that will make it easier for users to follow and reach out to their elected representatives. According to Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, the social network is increasing its focus on civic-minded tools.
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Facebook has launched a new feature named Town Hall that makes it easier for users to follow and reach out to their elected representatives.
The new tool confirms the growing importance of civic-minded features for the social network, as stated by Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg.
Facebook Launches Town Hall Feature
Zuckerberg announced the Town Hall feature through a Facebook post, claiming that the more users engage in the political process, the more they can ensure that their values are reflected through their elected officials.
“This is an important part of feeling connected to your community and your democracy, and it’s something we’re increasingly focused on at Facebook,” Zuckerberg added,
The Town Hall tool features connections to state and federal officials, along with the local elected officials for the 150 biggest cities in the United States. A spokesman for Facebook said that the company is looking to add more cities to the list.
The feature is also integrated into the News Feed, with users being given the option to contact an elected official after they like or comment on a post by that representative.
How To Use Facebook’s Town Hall Tool
The Town Hall tab is now available for all desktop and mobile versions of the social network on the Settings pages on apps or on the dedicated URL for web users.
Upon accessing the Town Hall tool, users will be asked to enter their address, with the note that Facebook will not share the address that the user will input for privacy purposes. Upon entering the information, the representatives of the district covering the said address will appear.
The representatives that will be displayed in the list will have two buttons beside them, namely Follow and Contact. Users will be able to follow the Facebook posts of their selected officials or can tap the blue Follow All button at the top to follow them all with one click. Users who will have a message to send to certain officials can do so through the Contact button, the tapping of which would give them choices of either making a call, sending a message, writing an email, or visiting that official’s page. Messages initiated through the tool will be sent through Facebook’s Messenger app.
Facebook Takes Deeper Dive Into Politics
The Town Hall feature is not Facebook’s first foray into politics. In the run-up to the 2016 United States presidential election, Facebook rolled out a bot for Messenger that helped users register to vote and launched an endorsement tab to allow users to show their support for either Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton.
However, Facebook became the subject of controversy after the spread of fake news on the social network was said to have helped Trump in his shocking victory to become the president of the United States. Zuckerberg has since responded to those claims, leading to a manifesto that declared the next stage of Facebook would be to start creating a global community that would come together to solve the world’s problems.
The addition of the Town Hall feature as a very useful tool to involve users in the political process is a step toward the lofty but benevolent goal.
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