By Dennis Culloton, President and CEO

In preparation for last weeks election here in Chicago, politicians were doing whatever they could to secure the last minute vote. In the closing days, alderman and mayoral candidate Bob Fioretti took to the social media platform Reddit to reach out to Chicago’s young people via an AMA.

An AMA, according to my millennial children, stands for “Ask Me Anything,” and usually serves as an informal interview platform between a famous or otherwise interesting person and the general internet-using public.

The phrase ask me anything isn’t used lightly- Reddit users get very ornery when an AMA-er comes off as disingenuous. Woody Harrelson did a famously bad AMA during which he refused to answer any questions that weren’t about the movie he was promoting. In retaliation, users dubbed Harrelson a diva whose PR team was answering the questions for him.

Ald. Fioretti’s AMA suffered similarly. We won’t pile on to the Alderman here. He lost, finishing fourth by a wide margin in a five-candidate race for mayor.  It is a sign of things to come however. The difficulty for political candidates is millennials get tired of talking points. Because every politicians’ talking points are a Google search away- the questions young voters are asking on platforms like Twitter and Reddit are more original, unique, fresh and probing.

There’s no way to take the politicking out of politics, but candidates seeking the millennial vote via social media might do well with a bit more candor and a little less carefully crafted spin.