A few weeks ago, we started asking readers to think back to the months leading up to Election Day and share their thoughts on the flood of political advertising.
(That flood of ads, by the way, grew to about 1.5 million TV ads — for state-level races alone. Based on rough estimates, those ads came at a cost of more than $855 million.)
Hundreds of you responded (scroll down to add your own response), and it was clear some feel passionately about this year's takeover of TV advertising slots. We've gathered a cross-section of your submitted thoughts here.
From Karla Dalley of Farmington, Connecticut:
It got so bad that my husband and I actually joked about them ads and made fun of them. I'm not quite sure that was the intention of the ad makers.
From Dave Doherty of Woodstock, Georgia:
They can be effective in countering Democrat propaganda pushed as "news" by the corporate media. Due to the overwhelming MSM bias toward their party, Republicans need political ads more than Democrats do, which is why Democrats want to restrict political advertising.
From Justin Locke of Waltham, Massachusetts:
It made me aware of what mainstream politicos think will work in terms of motivating voters or perhaps demotivating people to vote at all. No actual issue was ever raised, it was all about branding the opponent on a gut level of like or dislike. I guess that is what works generally.
From Ashley Vavasseur of Louisiana:
Tell me what your plans are, how you are going to make things better, where you stand on fiscal and social issues. It's pathetic that the only thing they have to say is "well at least I'm not that person."
From Peter Phelps of Portland, Oregon:
Anyone shouting so loud is probably employing bait and switch tactics, and I felt like I was getting pelted with excrement after the second or third ad.
From Sarah Wheatley of Colorado:
The ones funded by non-candidate groups were much more vicious in attacking the opponent and leveraging fear. They also seemed to stretch the truth quite a bit. The candidates' ads tried to be positive and non-threatening.
From Thomas Loomis of Maryland:
I don't believe that the political ads that I saw this election season made me support any candidate airing them more; rather they prompted me to investigate low-profile (and sometimes third-party) candidates who weren't flooding the airwaves with negative campaign ads.
From Sandra Holt of Florida:
All ads are promoting a product. Political ads are advertising a person or idea which to me is a product. I want to see all ads checked for truth by an independent group before being allowed to run on air just as a tube of toothpaste must meet truth in advertising before being aired. If a corporation can be a person, certainly a political ad can be tested as a product. I am dead serious about this. The television stations aren't going to change anything. Their income from ads is just too great.
From Robert Boxold of Florida:
[Ads had a] very negative impact, I have voted since the '60s and this year seriously considered not voting as it was obvious unlimited funds were buying this election.
Do you agree with this feedback? Disagree? We're still accepting submissions to our query, and hope to eventually display more of your responses as part of an upcoming project.