How to use your smartphone as a real-time reaction tool for Md. governor’s race debate

The Post is partnering with React Labs to offer a new way for Maryland voters to respond on smartphones, tablets, or laptops as they watch the top Democratic contenders for Maryland governor debate, which starts at 7 p.m. Wednesday.

Using React Labs as a second-screen tool, you can respond moment-by-moment, letting us know what you support and don’t support, what you believe and disbelieve. Just go to post.reactlabs.com to log in during the live broadcast (airing on NBC4 or Maryland Public Television).

Here’s how:

  1. In your browser, go to post.reactlabs.com
  2. When you’d like to log a reaction to something a candidate says, simply tap their photo, then tap the appropriate reaction button
  3. You can react as many times as you’d like over the course of the debate — the more, the better.  

That’s it; there’s no app to install. Your phone is the easiest second screen you can use while you’re watching the debate, but you can also visit post.reactlabs.com on any laptop or tablet.

Why participate this way? We want to know what issues you care about. React Labs lets you tell us what you think in a way that we can aggregate and analyze more effectively than  unstructured tweets and article comments.

But more importantly, we want to help you get accurate information on those issues.

In addition to buttons for ‘I support’ and ‘I oppose’, we’ve included ‘Truth’ and ‘Fact-check!’ because we want to hear which claims you believe and which you’d like to read a fact-check on.

We’ll use the data we collect during the debate to direct our reporting for Truth Teller on this race, targeting the claims that have the most reactions.


This graph from the React Labs: Educate project summarizes reactions from thousands of participants across the country using React Labs during the 2012 town hall presidential debate.

An important note: Results will not be representative of the whole population of Maryland voters, just of the participants who use the tool. 

React Labs, based in Bethesda, was founded by Professor Philip Resnik at the University of Maryland. The company started gathering data from thousands of viewers nationwide during the 2012 election season, contributing to a Walter Cronkite Award for Excellence in Television Political Journalism, and has also done analysis of Super Bowl advertising effectiveness.

Visit post.reactlabs.com now and sign up for a calendar reminder when the debate starts. Then, return at the start of the debate and make your reactions heard.

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