For people of a certain age, it’s upsetting to think that it is now more than 20 years since the first episode of the US sitcom Friends aired on UK TV.
At the time it launched, the show kicked off an international debate about the importance of an entire generation’s friends vs their family. In reality of course both are important and one of the interesting aspects of social media is that they are circles that are being brought ever closer together, as anyone that has seen their parents commenting on their friends Facebook pictures can attest!
What is often true, however, is that younger people are often more likely to listen to their friends than anyone else and respond to what they are saying. That is why the Commission, working with the NUS, the Association of Colleges, the Scout Association and a whole host of other organisations, has launched a campaign asking students and young people across the country to #RegAFriend.
Building on the campaign the Commission is already running with Facebook, we are now asking those young people that are already registered to encourage their friends to do the same by sharing messages through their social media accounts. We are hoping that Universities and Colleges around the country will get involved in the campaign and have made a toolkit available, which includes instructions on how they can get involved.
The action for the campaign is simple. All they need to do is find a friend who isn’t registered and get them to do so. They can then share a picture of themselves and their newly registered friend making the voter cross mark on social media. They can also then help to spread the word even further by simply tagging their friend in the picture, using the hashtag #RegAFriend, and including a link to the registration page encouraging others to do the same (www.gov.uk/register-to-vote).
It really is incredibly easy to do and the toolkit has been designed so that any organisation can get involved, you don’t just have to be ‘young’ and listening to your friends advice doesn’t finish the day you turn 21!
Ask yourself. Is everyone in your office registered to vote? Or what about friends that you went to school, college or university with (however long ago that was…)?
You could easily use the toolkit we have produced to spread the word on your organisation’s or your personal social media channels and get involved in the fun! So get behind the campaign by re-tweeting, sharing on Facebook and linking social media posts containing the hashtag #RegAFriend and encouraging others to do the same.
Head of Media