With the Issues DemTool, citizens have an opportunity to send their questions directly to the people who aspire to lead them. They can also expect to receive direct answers in the form of short video responses designed to be easily shared through the web or social media.
The Issues tool provides a way to bypass existing media intermediaries, permitting citizens and leaders to experience unfiltered engagement and dialogue. Direct interaction without filters can be particularly useful in places where media is cost-prohibitive or controlled by one particular political faction, a totalitarian-like setup that stifles opposition voices. As youth are more likely to be online, and more comfortable with digital formats, Issues can be a good platform for them to engage with the political process in a new way.
In a context where citizens are uninformed about policy differences among parties or campaign conversations, where there is little focus on the topics voters are most concerned about, Issues functions at its best. By training candidates on media skills needed to present short, to-the-point messages aimed at target audiences, Issues can help prepare candidates for TV appearances, interviews and in-person debates. Questions submitted by the citizenry also help parties better understand the concerns of the voters.