The Emancipator Teams Up With Northeastern University Students to Launch Voter Education Project
Jul 26, 2022
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Multimedia Project Features an Interactive Voter Chatbot, Voting Rights Explainer Videos, and Profiles on Changemakers Across the U.S.
BOSTON, July 26, 2022 /PRNewswire/ -- The Emancipator announced today the launch of its Voter Education Project, featuring VoteChat — a virtual chatbot built by Northeastern University graduate students that informs users nationwide on current and changing voter laws. The interactive tool provides a simple and anonymous way for prospective voters to learn about registration requirements, restrictions, and deadlines in each state. VoteChat can be accessed on The Emancipator website or by texting "vote" to (877) 596-5610. A live demo is viewable here . VoteChat is part of a collection of multimedia initiatives created by a cross-functional team of students from Northeastern University working under the guidance of Prof. Dan Zedek. The tool gathers information from a range of sources, including the Brennan Center for Justice's bimonthly voting law roundups and LegiScan. Voter registration information is sourced from official state websites and credible aggregators, such as Ballotpedia. For registration requirements, restrictions, and deadlines in your state, text "vote" to (877) 596-5610. Northeastern students also produced a series of explainer videos for prospective voters on topics ranging from campaign finance laws and voter fraud to women's suffrage and voter suppression history. Student journalists developed a multimedia collection of profiles showcasing voting rights changemakers across the country who are driven to organize communities along a range of issues, from Indigenous and disability rights, to the rights of the formerly incarcerated. "These student-journalists are meeting audiences where they live by delivering information on social media,"said co-editors in chief Deborah D. Douglas and Amber Payne, "where larger numbers of people stop and start their news consumption, and by amplifying grassroots organizers who are driving people to the polls." The Northeastern team managed all aspects of the project, which included photography and video production, building a messaging app, and conducting research and reporting. "The Emancipator is about community, connection and impact," Zedek said. "We loved being given the challenge of using new forms of digital storytelling to move people to explore, learn and take action on voting rights." About The Emancipator
The Emancipator is a digital commentary platform dedicated to achieving racial justice in America and beyond. Co-founded by Dr. Ibram X. Kendi and Bina Venkataraman, The Emancipator features original content from leading scholars, journalists, and community members to explore solutions to racial inequality and its intersections. A collaboration between the Boston Globe and Boston University's Center for Antiracist Research, The Emancipator reimagines the nation's first abolitionist newspapers — for a new day. About Northeastern University
Founded in 1898, Northeastern is a global research university and the recognized leader in experience-driven lifelong learning. Our world-renowned experiential approach empowers our students, faculty, alumni, and partners to create impact far beyond the confines of discipline, degree, and campus. Northeastern's comprehensive array of undergraduate and graduate programs—on-campus, online, and in hybrid formats—lead to degrees through the doctorate in nine colleges and schools. Among these, we offer more than 140 multi-discipline majors and degrees designed to prepare students for purposeful lives and careers.