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Pew report: Cellphone use widespread in 2010 midterm elections

December 23, 2010 | 10:27 am

Cellphones were a big part of the 2010 midterm elections, according to the results of a Pew Research Center survey released Thursday. Americans used their cellphones to keep up with election news, warn friends about long lines at polling places, and even to make campaign contributions.

Twenty-six percent of the 2,257 adults surveyed said they had used their mobile phones for political activities around the 2010 elections.

Fourteen percent said they had used their phones to alert others that they voted, 12% said they read election-related news updates on their mobile phones, 10% said they sent text messages about the election, and 6% said they used their cellphones to alert others to polling place conditions.

Smaller numbers said they monitored election results as they came in, shared election-related photos and videos, used apps that provided updates from candidates and political organizations, or contributed money to campaigns using their phones.

The people most likely to report using their mobile phones for political activities were young -- 18 to 29 -- and digitally connected, the report found. They were more likely than the general population to have broadband at home and own laptops, MP3 players, gaming consoles, e-readers and tablet computers, it said.

According to the report, about 82% of American adults say they have cellphones.

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