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After a Lackluster Election Year, Votizen Acquired by Causes.com

BY Sarah Lai Stirland | Friday, January 11 2013

Left to right: Now on the same team: David Binetti, Matt Mahan and Jason Putorti. Photo: Causes.com

Votizen made a splash in 2011 when it debuted as part of San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee's election campaign. The tool was one of the first platforms to explore social voting — asking supporters of a candidate or cause to reach out to eligible voters from among their friends on social networks. But while major political parties and issue campaigns picked up some of Votizen's competitors, their platform's growth chart looks kind of flat: A modest 100,000 users and 200 paying customers as of shortly after election day.

So maybe it should be no surprise that Votizen will no longer be flying solo. On Thursday, the social activism and online petitioning website Causes.com announced it would acquire the company under undisclosed terms. All user activity from 2012 will be wiped from the platform — but Causes.com will pick up all eight of the company's staff in the deal.

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Campaigns & Elections Magazine Announces "CampaignTech Innovators"

BY Miranda Neubauer | Thursday, April 5 2012

Campaigns & Elections magazine has announced its 2012 CampaignTech Innovators in the areas of campaigns, advocacy, Capitol Hill and nonpartisan innovation. Candidates are nominated by their peers. The winners "all demonstrate a visionary approach to the future of digital politics and advocacy," according to Campaigns and Elections. The recipients will officially receive the awards on April 19 at the CampaignTech Conference in Washington D.C., and most of the names will be familiar to regular techPresident readers. Read More

Votizen and DemDash: Can They Make Voting Social?

BY Micah L. Sifry | Friday, November 4 2011

Can we make voting for candidates and advocating for issues more social? And more specifically, can we make the whole process of supporting and endorsing candidates in advance of an election, or promoting a position on a ... Read More

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NYC Open Data Advocates Focus on Quality And Value Over Quantity

The New York City Department of Information Technology and Telecommunications plans to publish more than double the amount of datasets this year than it published to the portal last year, new Commissioner Anne Roest wrote last week in an annual report mandated by the city's open data law, with 135 datasets scheduled to be released this year, and almost 100 more to come in 2015. But as preparations are underway for City Council open data oversight hearings in the fall, what matters more to advocates than the absolute number of the datasets is their quality. GO

Civic Tech and Engagement: Announcing a New Series on What Makes it "Thick"

Announcing a new series of feature articles that we will be publishing over the next several months, thanks to the support of the Rita Allen Foundation. Our focus is on digitally-enabled civic engagement, and in particular, how and under what conditions "thick" digital civic engagement occurs. What we're after is answers to this question: When does a tech tool or platform enable actual people to make ongoing and significant contributions to each other, to a place or cause, at a scale that produces demonstrable change? GO

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