Dish Brings On More Local Features To Interactive Election Portal


Dish Network has added new local features to its Decision 2008 interactive TV platform, including categories such as “My Elections,” “News,” “and “Polls,” officials said Thursday.

In addition, existing applications such as “You Decide 08” and “For President” feature new designs and updated information, the satellite provider said.

Dish Network launched its election interactive portal in January to provide localized “unbiased” election coverage and information to its more than 13.8 million customer subscribers.

The satellite service is using new software from BIAP, or Broadband Interactive Applications, to provide subscribers with more local and national political information on its interactive platform.

Dish Decision 2008 also provides advertisers with the ability to use interactive technology to reach targeted audiences with precise messaging. For example, a national committee for a political party may purchase advertising space for a candidate in a local U.S. congressional race. When Dish Network subscribers select the advertisement, the application activates to U.S. House and Senate candidates based on the subscriber’s zip code.

Advertising options include 30-second commercials, lists of campaign events, candidate information, campaign contributions and more. These advanced features are available to all Dish Network customers free of charge, and no additional equipment is required to run and view the service.

“Through multiple applications, Dish Network customers and advertisers now have access to a variety of interactive tools to stay informed during the 2008 election cycle,” Dish Network executive vice president Michael Kelly said in a prepared statement. “Our subscribers can learn more about Presidential candidates and their stances as well as local U.S. congressional and gubernatorial races; this is another example of how Dish Network’s interactive team is utilizing its technology to provide services nationally and locally for our subscribers.”

“My Elections” allows Dish Network subscribers access to localized information about U.S. House and Senate races within their states and other states. The iTV platform matches a subscriber’s ZIP code against a database of U.S. House and Senate candidates and provides his or her local candidate information to Dish Network subscribers. The service also provides information about gubernatorial races.

Other new features include a “News” category that provides up-to-the-minutes political content from MSNBC. “Polls” provides Dish Network subscribers with the ability to follow stories and access the latest polls on the presidential and U.S. congressional races from Rasmussen Reports. Subscribers may also participate in the Dish Decision Poll and the Rasmussen “Question of the Day” by using their mobile phones.

Upgraded applications include “You Decide 2008” and “For President.” The “For President” category lists all presidential candidates running for office. Dish Network customers may select a candidate to learn more information about his or her political beliefs.

“You Decide 2008” platform allows subscribers to research and learn more information about the current presidential field by asking a series of questions based on top political issues. The application matches a subscriber’s answers with presidential campaign stances and advises which candidate best matches his or her political beliefs.

To launch Dish Network iTV applications, customers can go to DishHOME channel 100 and select a category. Customers will be able to select from a series of iTV applications.

Dish Network has the most iTV enabled set-top boxes with more than 13 million households.