Friday's debate between presidential candidates Sen. Barack Obama and Sen. John McCain marked the beginning of the end to a very long election cycle. But the debate also brought a renewed interest in the candidates and the electoral process that will undoubtedly only build through to the November election.
Online, more and more tools are launching to get people involved and keep a handle on the growing amount of commentary and information about the election.
Fact-checking the debates can happen almost instantly with the tools now available online. MediaShift looks at what's available now, and found a number of nonpartisan sites, from Media Matters to FactCheck.org and NewsBusters that take a deep dive on politicians' claims. MediaShift also addresses fears from academics that regardless of the available information, people often go online to confirm what they already believe, rather than to get the facts.
Last week, the Washington Post launched its Political Browser, a site that pulls together news and opinion from across the web, dividing sound bites into categories like "Punchlines" (quick hits from the comedy shows and humor web sites), "Trench Warfare" (left and right-wing political blog posts), and the "Blunder Box" (quotes that politicians probably wish they could revise).
To learn more about how traditional journalists are coping with the online space and how political coverage is changing, join in a chat with PBS Engage and NewsHour correspondent Judy Woodruff, where you can both ask questions and rate submitted questions. Possible topics that have been submitted so far include:
Add your questions and participate in the chat at 1pm tomorrow by visiting pbs.org/chat.