Raising a chuckle over AV

It was the final weekend of campaigning for the historic national referendum before the fight for hearts and minds over the question of the alternative voting (AV) system really hit Yorkshire.

Image copyright (C) British Broadcasting Corporation
Image caption Supporters of 'No to AV' demonstrated their opposition

The "No" battle bus and its supporters rolled into Leeds on a bright Sunday morning. It was photogenic enough to grab the attention of photographers and TV cameras.

Bemused city centre shoppers paused, listened for a minute or two, politely took the proffered leaflets then carried on shopping.

It was a similar story the following afternoon.

Little voter interest?

The "Yes" campaigners did not have a battle bus, they turned up on Leeds' pedestrianised Briggate with a very loud band and many posters.

There was also a speech from Eddie Izzard - the alternative comedian is serious about the alternative vote.

Once again photographers and TV cameras formed the bulk of the audience.

Image copyright (C) British Broadcasting Corporation
Image caption Eddie Izzard is serious about the alternative vote

The shoppers were scrupulous in showing no favour to either side.

Once again they listened politely, took the leaflets and then carried on shopping.

It has been a hard slog raising any sort of enthusiasm either for or against these proposals for changing the way in which we elect our MPs.

The increasingly acrimonious and headline-grabbing arguments between the two sides have hardly been a talking point down at the Butchers Arms.

Social networks the vehicle?

So in this electronic age has the internet been the main stage for the debate?

The official Yes2AV and No2AV campaigns have posted lots of specially shot "infomercials" on YouTube.

But they have not been spectacular successes.

In an age when five million people can check out an amusing video of a giggling baby posted by a doting mum, the most popular AV videos had less than 50,000 views at the time of writing.

For me the most amusing was from neither of the official campaigning teams. Pamela Greener from Wakefield was videoed sitting and playing the piano singing her own composition The AV Ditty.

It had just over 10,000 views last time I checked, but I bet every one had a chuckle. She's not a fan of AV… but if the "Yes" camp can come up with one remotely as entertaining then I'm happy to post a link to that too.

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