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First POST: Downplaying

BY Micah L. Sifry | Thursday, November 6 2014

Debating what happened to the Democrats' vaunted tech-powered turnout machine in 2014; how Healthcare.gov hurt Democratic incumbents; understanding the participatory engine that is Wikipedia; and much, much more. Read More

First POST: Can You Hear Me Now?

BY Micah L. Sifry | Tuesday, December 17 2013

Federal District Court Judge Richard Leon blasts the NSA's phone metadata collection program; Edward Snowden sees vindication in the preliminary ruling; the Internet Archive unveils an amazing visualization of the "geography of US TV news"; and much, much more. Read More

FCC May Consider Whether Unsolicited Email To Text On Mobile Phones Is Legal

BY Sarah Lai Stirland | Wednesday, October 24 2012

The Federal Communications Commission opened a proceeding on Tuesday to determine whether e-mails sent to phones as texts should be subject to its rules that protect consumers from unsolicited messages on their mobile ... Read More

Text Message Donations Might Become a Viable Option for More Campaigns

BY Sarah Lai Stirland | Friday, September 7 2012

In 2008, campaigns turned to SMS to ask for votes. In 2012, will they ask for money? Photo: Cazimiro / Flickr

Exclusively for Personal Democracy Plus subscribers:Recent action at the Federal Election Commission could make collecting donations via text message a more realistic proposition for campaigns. The two presidential campaigns are already able to collect donations from clients of several cellphone carriers by having them text a shortcode put to use by their election effort. Now, new FEC opinions and requests for opinions seem to be paving the way for more campaigns to get in on the action. Read More

A Step Forward for Political SMS Donations

BY Sarah Lai Stirland | Friday, August 17 2012

Efforts to make text-messaging donations to political campaigns a reality took a significant step forward this week when the Federal Election Commission clarified its view on some of the key questions wireless carriers wanted to clarify before doing business in politics.Both campaigns and the carriers have been hesitating to roll out donations by text message even though the commission gave the green light in June because the initial opinion had not delineated responsibility for staying compliant with regulations as clearly as the wireless carriers would have liked.

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White House Videographer Joins Revolution Messaging

BY Sarah Lai Stirland | Tuesday, March 27 2012

President Obama turns the camera on Arun Chaudhary Photo: Courtesy Arun Chaudhary

Arun Chaudhary, the White House's first videographer, has joined mobile-messaging firm Revolution Messaging as its senior vice president of communications. Chaudhary will help the firm's clients with their video ... Read More

The Pocket Campaign: Mobile Politics in 2012

BY Jack Harris | Monday, March 26 2012

Toronto mayoral candidate Rocco Rossi canvasses with an iPad in 2010. Photo: Rocco Rossi

The past two years offer several fresh, new examples of how causes and campaigns willing to experiment with mobile technology reported back that they were rewarded with a network of more engaged, more empowered volunteers. Last year, for example, activists fought tooth-and-nail in several states around ballot initiatives and recall efforts. In those fights, often for the first time, grassroots organizers began to ask volunteers to work on their phones and tablets. At the same time, candidates in 2011 local and congressional races took advantage of mobile tools and tactics that had been developed in higher-profile races in prior years, but had now become cost-effective for the small campaign. This special report updates that tranche of examples with case studies from across the country. Each one explores how mobile technology has become part of the organizing, messaging and fund-raising strategy of some tech-savvy causes and campaigns. Read More

Politics is Mobile, According to New Pew Report

BY Nick Judd | Thursday, December 23 2010

As much as 26 percent of the adult American population may have engaged with the midterm elections using their mobile phone, according to a study released today by the Pew Internet & American Life Project. Online ... Read More