Debate viewing scheduled

By: Emily Linginfelter ~Staff Writer~

The Communication and Political Science Departments will collaborate to present “Xavier Debate Watch,” a lively, interactive screening and tweeting session for the Republican presidential debate at 8:30 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 16 in Alter Hall room 204.

Photo courtesy of Ashley Hinck                  During the event, students are encouraged to live tweet some of the highlights of the debate.

Guest speaker Howard Wilkinson, an experienced journalist for local and state political campaigns, will make a special appearance to begin the event and discuss basic information regarding the debates.

The various topics cover general viewing expectations, political tactics frequently used by the speakers and tips for evaluating the candidates. A brief presentation is scheduled to follow, which highlights the new digital media and political communication minors that the university launched in August 2015.

Representatives from each department plan to describe how the process of modern communication challenges the antediluvian campaigning strategies of American politics. “As of today, social media opens the space for participation,” Ashley Hinck, coordinator of the new digital media minor said. “In our own community, we are making a strong attempt to intervene on the barriers of limited-access cable and give all Xavier students the opportunity to watch something that will impact the rest of their lives.”

The Republican Presidential speeches air at 9 p.m. on CNN. Those who plan to attend the “Xavier Debate Watch” are encouraged to bring their smart phones, computers and tablets to connect with a larger audience on social media. Comments or questions posted onto Twitter, Facebook and other platforms of digital communication should end with specific hashtags to create a clear, connective conversation.

The local hashtag #XUDMWatches creates a kind of “Twitterverse” specific to the Xavier community, and the #GOPDebates official hashtag launches these tweets into the broader, national conversation. Both hashtags are susceptible to change and may be updated prior to Sept. 16.

“Our hope is to make these debate viewings a continuous event throughout the academic year,” Hinck said. “It truly empowers Xavier students. You are the speakers and powerful agents of change.”