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Politico reports that both the Romney and Obama campaigns have started using Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey’s “magical” dongle, Square. Of course, you can’t pay by saying your name as you now can at select merchants, but Square still makes campaign donations much faster and easier. Staff, field organizers and campaign volunteers hook up Square to their mobile phones and accept campaign donations on the spot.
The Obama campaign personnel will be able to use either iPhones or Androids. Politico reports that staff at all levels will have access to Square card readers. The Romney campaign isn’t moving as quickly, rolling out Square in Florida only, just in time for tonight’s primary. The campaign has plans to start using Square nationally at some point in the future.
Barack Obama has been leading the way on social media, giving the most interactive State of the Union address ever on Jan 24. It featured a Twitter hashtag and the entire speech was streamed on WhiteHouse.gov/SOTU. The White House also hosted a Google+ Hangout on Jan 30, which our own Jon Mitchell attended and blogged about. Sure, it might have been fun to hangout with the Prez, but unless you were one of the five Americans who actually hung out with him live, Mitchell reports, the experience felt just like television. Obama first launched as a Google+ brand, not a profile, late last year. Not long ago, the president joined Instagram.
Yes, it’s pretty awesome that the Obama campaign is using Square, the oh-so-popular mobile photo app Instagram and the Google+ hangout feature. But we are at a point now where social media tools and mobile payments are hardly a novelty. Instead, they are accepted and necessary modes of communication.