Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Less worrying -- more working

Feeling down about the apparent stall of Barack Obama's campaign since the conventions? There's a remedy. DO SOMETHING!

Today MoveOn.org offered me a chance to act; I did as instructed and I feel better already. This project is over -- but you can achieve the same moderate relief from campaign anxiety. Stop fretting; start working.

Here's the poop on my little effort this afternoon, worthy of reporting, I think, because it was a smart project and a smart use of contemporary technological possibilities.

The email explained:

Starting tomorrow, thousands of your fellow MoveOn members in battleground states will be volunteering at hundreds of local Obama campaign office -- knocking on doors, making phone calls, registering new voters, and more.

They're going to make a big difference -- which is why we want to make doubly sure that we're giving them the right addresses and phone numbers.

That's where we need your help. Can you spend a few minutes calling at least ten Obama offices to make sure the info we have for them is correct?

I didn't have time, but it seemed a good idea and I did it anyway.

The online tools were good. Here's the script:

Here's what the call screen looked like after I'd finished a call:

Here's what popped up after 6 calls:

This was worth doing. If your campaign is going to use volunteers, you have to make them confident you are not wasting their time. That includes sending them to the right address at a time when the campaign office will be open. Don't laugh. On a project this large, it would be easy to screw up and burn off some willing enthusiasts.

The folks getting the calls at Obama offices were nice, full of energy. The offices I called had just opened. They liked the idea of MoveOn sending in the troops. They'll welcome you and put you to work if you go join them.

As a multi-national corporation once urged: "Just do it."

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