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Federal Election 2011

Cool Election Web Stuff

Join a vote mob! Break up with Harper! Pore over Parliamentary law! See Layton with hair! And much more.

David Beers 22 Apr

David Beers is editor of The Tyee.

The digital landscape looked pretty barren back in the cold days of mid-March. Suddenly, three weeks into April, a riot of election-oriented campaigns, web sites, vids and other 2.0 efforts have bloomed. Here's a guide to some of the best, broken into categories of Proudly Partisan, Strategic Advice, Voter Motivators and Political Geekfests.


Shit Harper Did

Exploded onto the scene last week with its roll call of very bad things done by the Harper government, backing its claims with articles from media sources. What keeps propelling people to those pages are regularly released viral videos like one explaining why the PM is an "evil astronaut" or one sharing "Canadian womens’ favourite pick-up line."

Which Canada Will You Vote For?

Comic strip by "just some guy" (whose email on the site uses the name Michael Nabert) piles up his case against Harper, with footnotes substantiating. The entire comic can be printed out here.

How do you get younger people to vote against Conservatives? Make seniors scary, by posting statements like "Old people vote: They watch CSI and Law & Order and think it's all true." And (with a picture of a grandpa sticking out his tongue): "He's got 10 years tops. You’ve gotta live here for 80 or more! Why not vote for things that matter to you?"

It's Over Steve! Women breaking up with Harper

Visitors are invited to "Make your own breakup video, upload it, and link to this page!"

Harper Nope

Victoria-based photo artist Bob Preston is giving away his backwards spin on the Obama Hope campaign poster here.

BC Blue

The blogosphere is rife with vibrant voices, left, right and plain nutty. BC Blue is a solid, hard-core Conservative blogger in British Columbia.


Pair Vote: 2011 Federal Election

Learn about vote swapping and whether it's something you want to do to "stop a false Harper majority."

Project Democracy

Cleanly laid out guide to voting strategically if your aim is to oppose a Harper majority. Lists two B.C. ridings as "key contests": West Vancouver-Sunshine Coast-Sea to Sky Country, and Vancouver Island North.


Not beautiful to behold but packed with links and info about 22 target ridings, including seven in B.C., where "super voters" can thwart Harper's quest for a majority.

Swing 33

Launched with an opinion piece by one of its creators, published here on The Tyee, Swing 33 identifies 33 ridings where voters might target their political donations to help prevent a Harper majority.


Mr. Lahey on the Virtues of Voting

Well-lubricated character from Trailer Park Boys says young people won't vote because they're shit weasels and dickweeds.

Speak in Images

Visitors are invited to write an expression on paper, whiteboard, whatever, and take a picture of themselves with their statement and post the image to this site. Fun to browse the Election Expression Series.

Apathy Is Boring Montreal-based organization seeks to get young people involved in politics through art. Here's a recent CBC clip about them. Gen Why Media Project Vancouver-based project "uses media, public art, media and events to tactically engage young people in new forms of civic participation."

Vote Mobs

Credit Rick Mercer for helping to get this phenomenon going with his challenge to 18-25 year olds to "scare the hell out of the people who run this country" by voting. Vote mobs organized via Facebook ensued on campuses including Guelph, Ottawa, McMaster, Calgary, UBC and, one of the best, UVic.

Student Vote

Takes an alternative approach by doing outreach in the form of mock voting for students in elementary and high schools.


Non-partisan hub "brings together generations of Canadians to take action for our future and hold politicians accountable" and urges visitors "let's vote together, and celebrate a growing movement!"


Democratic Space

Regularly updated projections based on riding polling aggregation and modelling.


More projects based on aggregated polls, with blogged analysis.


Still more electoral forecasting.

Election Prediction Project

Crowd-sourced punditry aggregated to produce a rolling forecast on the election. Can't vouch for its accuracy, but a good place to sample opinions.

Election Almanac

One-stop shopping for latest data on the unfolding election.

Canadian Electoral Map 2008

Uses Google maps and Elections Canada data to allow you to zoom around and see, riding by riding, who voted for whom where. There's mapping showing 2007-2009 individual contributions, too. The user's guide is here.


Calls self: "The Canadian political Twitter & social media site! From one location keep track of what your politicians are saying on social media and what Canadians have to say about current politics. Politwitter does the searching for you by indexing Canadian federal and provincial political Twitter, Facebook, blogs, YouTube, Flickr and more into one location. The site maintains a list of politicians and political tweeters as well as popular hash tags. You can view tweets narrowed down by MPs, partisan affiliation, province and more."

2011 Canadian Federal Election Newspaper Content Analysis

McGill Institute for the Study of Canada parses media coverage of the election and posts reports (not exactly up to the minute). Maclean's keys off some of the findings in its pages, too. Example here.

iPolitics Election 2011

Recently launched independent political news website iPolitics has a special section devoted to the election. Elements like the Morning Brief and iPolitics Notebook make it geek heaven.

Tyee's Election Coverage

Shameless, I know. But a lot of people don't know that The Tyee collects just its 2011 federal election related features under this topic heading and our blog The Hook has a specific federal politics filter. Just trying to bring some efficiency to your busy life.

Democracy Law Blog

"Your online resource for news, resources and analysis of the laws that are the foundation of democracy and governance in Canada, including election law, campaign finance, lobbying and conflicts of interest," published by Vancouver-based lawyer Clay Whitman.

Pundits' Guide to Canadian Federal Elections

Alice Funke's very impressive stats-fest plus up to the minute nomination info for all parties everywhere in Canada.

Vintage Voter

Cringe inducing photos of the various party leaders when they were young and ill-coiffed.

Thanks to these who helped compile this list: Jim Cooperman, Geoff D’Auria, Crawford Kilian, Katie Hyslop, Ajay Puri, Hugh Stimson, Bill Tieleman and Jessica Van.

Tyee readers are invited to add, in a comment below, more sites you've enjoyed visiting this election season.

*Story updated at 11 a.m., April 22, 2011.  [Tyee]

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