In case you missed it, the first round of the France presidential elections kicked off on Sunday, with incumbent Nicolas Sarkozy facing a struggle going into the next round after coming second to Socialist candidate Francois Hollande.
Internet giant Google is getting in on the act by launching a Google Elections portal for the French election, following on from its US version for the Republican primaries, one for Egypt last November which we reported on at the time, as well as Senegal and Mexico.
“Polling company Opinionway published a study at the end of last year that showed 52% of French citizens follow the electoral campaign online compared to 38% for the written press and 27% for the radio,” says Florian Maganza, Policy Analyst at Google in France. “In order to help satisfy this growing demand, we developed google.fr/elections, an information hub to study, watch, discuss and participate in the French presidential campaign.”
Google brings its others tools into the mix too, such as Google News, Google+ YouTube and Google Maps to present information from a variety of sources on the campaign and its results.
The French polls closed on Sunday at 8pm, with the election results appearing in real-time on Google Maps. Viewers could see each candidate’s performance broken down for each of the country’s 106 departments as well as for each of its 33,844 towns.
Hollande and Sarkozy will now face each other over the next fortnight until voters hit the polling station for round two on May 6.