Voting in Newfoundland and Labrador: Turned off by Canadian Elections? Tune in to Canadian Idol!

Marland, Alex (2009) Voting in Newfoundland and Labrador: Turned off by Canadian Elections? Tune in to Canadian Idol! Newfoundland and Labrador Studies, 24 (2). pp. 219-237. ISSN 1715-1430

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Abstract

NEWFOUNDLANDERS AND LABRADORIANS are among the least likely of all Canadians to vote in a federal election. By comparison, turnout in the three nearby Maritime provinces regularly exceeds the national average. Yet Atlantic Canadians seem to share a common interest in supporting their own in national reality television programs that allow repeat voting, usually by telephone, in elimination rounds as part of a televised talent search. This article argues that there can be political undertones when Canadians vote as part of the reality television experience. The popularity of CTV’s Canadian Idol contrasts declining engagement in Canadian federal politics. Exploratory data gathered at an Idol audition in St. John’s provides preliminary insights about televoting and about young persons’ motivations for becoming contestants. This can help gauge undercurrents of political identity among Idol fans who do not participate in federal elections in Canada, particularly in Newfoundland and Labrador.

Item Type: Article
URI: http://research.library.mun.ca/id/eprint/12051
Item ID: 12051
Department(s): Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of > Political Science
Date: 2009
Date Type: Publication
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