Facebook Wants To Connect You To Your Local Reps

by Eliza Castile

Are you tired of being urged to contact your local representatives? Too bad! The new Facebook "Town Hall" feature makes civic engagement so simple there's literally no excuse not to give politicians a call. Thanks to the new feature, you don't even have to leave the app to find a politician's contact information, and given that users spend an average of 50 minutes a day on a Facebook-related platform, most people probably have the time.

According to Tech Crunch, Town Hall popped up earlier this week under the "More" menu on the Facebook mobile app. The feature has been rolled out not long after CEO Mark Zuckerberg's lengthy letter outlining a series of new community-focused goals for the social media behemoth. "For the past decade, Facebook has focused on connecting friends and families. With that foundation, our next focus will be developing the social infrastructure for community," he wrote. That includes building up civic engagement.

So how does Town Hall work? The feature is designed to connect you to representatives at the local, state, and federal level. After you enter your address — or if Facebook fills it in for you — you're provided with a list of representatives based on your area. Ideally, this list comes with an option to follow their Facebook page and message or email the politician, but the app is limited to those with a public page and whatever information they've made available there.

This means that the local representative of a small town might not show up on Town Hall, or that their contact information might be limited. However, the feature lists everything from Senators and House Representatives to your governor and mayor, so at least there's that.

You can find Town Hall by navigating to the options menu on the Facebook app. Under "explore," tap "see more." Scroll down until you find Town Hall, and go from there.

The feature also lists your friends who also follow a politician's page, because Facebook wouldn't be Facebook if it didn't involve peer pressure. So what are you waiting for? Go get your civic engagement on.