John McCain was featured on Yahoo! Answers today asking What
would you do to stop wasteful government spending? and as of this posting
had over 11,000 answers. There are a lot of good answers from Yahoo's
community in addition to quite a number of funny ones. I personally think
this is a great way to involve people and also drive traffic for Yahoo.
Who would you rather have ask you a question?
Thousands of answers become a nightmare to go through and I know that any campaign featured there will go through them. Besides the ability to give responses, people in the community can vote an answer up or down and if enough negative votes occur, the answer gets hidden. This keeps the amount of rude comments down and truly focuses Yahoo Answers on people that take it seriously and actually want to give constructive feedback. This is in direct competition with blogs and message boards where any bad comment can live forever unless the blogger removes it.
I wrote about Yahoo Answers a long time back with how much I like it. I’ve participated fairly often in the early days, but now I get a little too busy to weed through the comments. It is a great way to leverage Yahoo’s reach into the internet community while empowering it. I just hope people don’t make a game of comparing the number of answers candidates receive because each topic is unique and that’s not the point of the exercise. I hope Yahoo keeps these coming because it is a great way to get people to share their opinions and get involved in the political process.