May 23, 2008

Why wait for the pollsters?

No comment about Hillary now. Poor Kevin's head is about to explode every time she opens her big, fat, hypocritical mouth (oops, I said I wasn't going to make any comments). And anyway, she's irrelevant. And I'm also not going to mention the uneducated, rural white voters, whose votes are apparently so much more important than the rest of us that we can't disenfranchise them, even though they weren't enough to win a freakin' primary. Do their votes count 2 for 1 or am I missing something? I hate the assumption that we need them because "they're the only ones who vote"--because obviously all of those other people who voted--enough to win the primary--aren't going to show up in November when it really counts. Okay, I mentioned it, but I'm not going to go on at length about it.

I did want to comment again, as I have done several times, about how much I admire Obama's embracing of the internet, his grassroots campaign, and his understanding of the power, reach, and scope of the internet. This is something that I still see pooh-pooh'ed in the media despite the 1.5 million people who contributed to Obama's political campaign, most of which were on the internet. Nobody has ever had a fundraising reach like that before, and the longer the rest of politics takes to see how significant and important (and EASY!) that is, the more they will continue to lose.

The old ship has sailed, folks. Deal with it. What do you get when a core group of supporters who donate the maximum amount actually max out? A nice, big debt, that's what.

Anyway, I was prompted to write because I got an email, as I frequently do being a member of the email list, from the Obama campaign asking me for a donation to take a survey. Yes, an online survey. So I did, being the Survey Queen (I love taking surveys--don't ask me why) that I am. The survey asked me the questions I expected--my basic demographic information race, gender, etc. and then it asked what issues I was most interested in. Then it asked if I'd volunteered, how I'd volunteered, and how I would be willing to volunteer, which I strongly suspect was a main impetus of the survey itself (volunteer recruitment).

Most of the responses were check boxes. How brilliant. Within milliseconds my responses went to the server and was immediately sliced, diced, organized, and sent to the appropriate database. Shelby Hogan cares about the environment! Check. Shelby Hogan values foreign policy! Slot. And local branch offices and volunteer organizers all get a list of "People who are willing to phonebank" (I'm not) and "People who are willing to go door-to-door" (also not me, but those were two options).

Can you just imagine how valuable that information is? How else on earth can you generate a self-selected list of people willing to go door-to-door with almost zero human time and effort? How else can you pick up the phone and call a supporter who has already expressed an interest in phonebanking knowing they are likely to follow through? How much time do other campaigns spend talking to people individually saying, "will you phonebank? No? Well how about going door-to-door? No? Well how about..."? How many potential willing volunteers are never utilized because the campaign is waiting for those people to come to them? My guess is it's huge.

So easy, and so brilliant.

And then at the end they showed an inspirational video and asked for a donation. Heh.

Posted by Shelby at May 23, 2008 03:31 PM
Sadly, Further Comments Have Been Disabled ...

Due to a never-ending flood of comment spam, we've decided to disable comments for all blog entries past a certain age. If you'd like to comment on a closed blog entry, say something in one of the newer entries or E-mail the author.

-- Apologies, The Management