QR Code: Your Campaign Held Hostage?

POSTED ON
August 24

GOP Tech Week News Short: QR Code - Your Campaign Held Hostage?

QR codes are gaining traction and wider use in all campaigns, not just GOP campaigns.

They are especially valuable to GOP campaigns because they make the campaign appear more digitally savvy and 'with it'.

Unless it means they actually are not.

Web sites are multiplying that make it very easy to quickly generate a highly attractive QR code in color, with your campaign logo, and attractive curved QR  code 'eyes'.   

The only problem is that many of these web sites do not make it clear that you are participating in a 'trial' - you get the QR out in print on all yuor campaign collateral, then the phone calls start to come in...

Your QR code is not working!

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Wordpress: Danger for GOP Candidate Sites

POSTED ON
July 26

zeroday.png2015 seems to be the year that killed Wordpress for political web sites, except nobody knows it yet.  

Even the FBI has warned that ISIS is exploiting Wordpress vulnerabilities.

No candidate wants to be a victim of having his/her web site hacked.  Worse yet, no candidate wants his/her web site to be the source of a virus infection and infects his/her supporters' and donors' computers [Forbes] with a serious virus.  It's bad enough that your web site might get hacked and defaced so it's obvious to the public that you've been hacked.  

Wordpress' documented credential leak reveals login credentials, but worse yet, could yield the attacker your email list allowing your attacker to email your entire list - claiming (truthfully or untruthfully) that they have fully compromised your site. 

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Barkett Gives RNC Digital Ground Truth in SF

POSTED ON
July 23

Bless Andy Barkett, the former Facebook digital savior hired by the RNC after the famous 2012 digital 'autopsy' of failed digital operations.   Saturday, Barkett appeared at a Lincoln Labs event in  San Francisco and elaborated on his previous statements about the dearth of digital regard at the RNC.   The digerati sigh and wonder wearily if this continuing indictment will ever be closed.  The RNC hired a savior, from Facebook for cryin' out loud, for its digital game, but conceptually couldn't harness his expertise so generously offered.

"Read the whole thing" as they say - at both links above.

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RNC Digital Message at CRP: Hopeful/Promising

POSTED ON
March 15

andy.png

 

Kudos to the CRP at their convention this weekend for hosting the RNC's new digital CTO Andy Barkett (hired from Facebook) for an educational session entitled 'The Wonderful World of Data'. 

 

In a fairly comprehensive (and somewhat technical) presentation,  Mr.  Barkett both instructed his audience at set forth hints of his overall vision for data development within the RNC for the near future.   

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Democracy.com Offers Dems Free Web Sites

POSTED ON
March 13

Democracy.com has released a new web site resource that claims to offer you a free candidate web site (although we suspect there is a percentage charge for donation processing) and significant social media hooks.  

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Avoid Social Media Suicide: Consult Experts HuffPo and Kos for Free

POSTED ON
November 29

kiss.of.death.pngI swear if I see another set of social media icons like I see at the right, I'm going to commit hissing, spitting seppuku right here online.  

The sad part is, illiterate GOP consultants are giving candidates and parties the icons at left and guaranteeing that they are 'good to go' with social media.  

Bunk.  And even more unsavory expletives.

Let's consult the acknowledged experts, the Huffington Post and the Daily Kos.  Leaders of the left social media, I guarantee you can follow the links to those sites above and you will not see the icons at right, nor pages similar to what those icons  link to.

Instead, you'll see icons/buttons that actually work to promote their web site content - the very reason that the left is winning in social media spaces.  At the experts' sites, you see icons and toolbars like this:

sm.toolbars.png

25 or so of them on each HuffPo page, fewer on Kos, but both take advantage of one idea: let your readers promote your ideas to their friends and followers.

If you are a conservative candidate or  party you do not see the buttons immediately above but instead see the buttons at the top, you should immediately be on the phone with your consultant screaming bloody murder.  

Why?  Because the second set of buttons promotes your site and gets you free advertising.  The first set of buttons does not.

Does the second set of buttons cost more to put on your site?  No.  They are copied/pasted onto your site just like the first set of buttons.  The only explanation for the presence of the first set of buttons and not the second set is social media illiteracy.

 

 

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Secure Email Self-Reliance is Easy.

POSTED ON
October 25


Me(mod N) = C

At the end of this article, we'll offer you (free) the solution we discuss: subpoena-resistant email servers set up in Europe, with encryption tech you can use like a mini-storage: you lock it, you keep the key.  NSAmail.us (or also innoc.us).  Permanent FREE secure email accounts will be available for a limited time so you can try our NSAmail.us Beta.

Today, we learned that CryptoSeal has followed Lavabit and SilentCircle in stopping secure email operations for US customers.  A moment's reflection (and wide discussion) reveal the theory that they shut down because they received US Government subpoenas for their encryption keys - subpoenas that contain secrecy orders, imposing severe penalties if they disclosed that that their encryption keys had been subpoenaed.  We don't know for sure, because they aren't saying, but the fact that they won't disclose specific reasons for shutting down their services suggests they have been placed under legal obligations of a subpoena with a gag order attached.

Although these vendors benefited from the misconception, the entire scandal rests on one deplorable consumer miscalculation: that people and companies must rely on an outside vendor to manage their day-to-day encryption and privacy security for them.

That's simply not the case.  Like Americans in an earlier era, we do have the capability to be easily and securely self-reliant for our privacy and ciphers to secure our own communications.  The tech is available, and it's easy to use.

And if we are self-reliant with easily-deployable tech in that fashion, then the NSA, CIA, Homeland Security and DOJ can issue all the subpoenas, warrants and pen register demands they desire, and even retrieve encryption keys from the vendors... and the contents of our communications are still safe, still secure.

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Tech Pushes Tea Party Caucus to Success at CRP Convention

POSTED ON
October 10

 

qr.logo.png

Advanced tech was
essential to the caucus


By all reports
, the 'maiden voyage' of the Tea Party California Caucus (TPCC) at the recent CRP Convention in Anaheim, CA was a complete success.  The TPCC digital operation was a big part of that success.

At the convention, caucus managers discovered that they possessed a communications system that could help them deal swiftly with unexpected events in committees, etc., as well as a platform that allowed them to publicize the cause, enroll activist delegates, recruit volunteers, raise funds, organize workers, and cause its TPCC Convention App to go viral on delegates' mobile phones. 

While political opinions may differ, few can assert that the TPCC did not make the splash it hoped to make at the recent Anaheim convention of the California Republican Party.  

Digital tech was involved in nearly every aspect of the caucus' labors at the convention, to recruit additional voting delegates, and to manage the caucus politically while at the convention.

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Many GOP Efforts Equal to OFA, but Don't Know it

POSTED ON
September 01

So everyone knows the story of how the Dems used automation and social media to kick our butts in the 2008 and 2012 campaigns.

If you're using NationBuilder, you already have the tools to match that game. You do. Totally. 

You can even do better than Obama and OFA.

Here's how the Dems do it:

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CA Tea Party Organizing CRP Caucus - with Effective Tech

POSTED ON
August 25
Cuacus Flor Management
Caucus Floor Management at the CRP?

 

Tea Party tech may allow minority to caucus like a majority

It's major good news, both politically and on the tech front as the Tea Party California Caucus (TPCC), a collection of Tea Party organizations from up and down California, announces its intent to be present at the California Republican Party (CRP) Convention in October as a formal caucus.

I dare say that many Tea Party activists may well look back on the last week of August, 2013 as the week that real Tea Party political influence began.  Many savvy politcos I've talked to across the country regard this as a HUGE development.

There are four major tranches of good news in this story: the formation of a Tea Party caucus at the CRP convention, the technology that the TPCC is employing, TPCC help in becoming a voting delegate to the CRP Convention (this means you!), and TPCC help in becoming a voting member of your district/county party central committee (again, this means you!); in short: learning to actually help govern the GOP effectively toward more conservative Tea  Party principles.  Then exercising that governing power effectively at the state party and subordinate conventions (other states outside CA have subordinate conventions, CA does not).

All three, together and separately, are the most powerful short- and long-term tactics for exerting influence in governing the party. 

But it's not just the intention of the Tea Party to start getting inside CRP governance that's good news, it's also the tech they've deployed to both manage and inform the caucus during the CRP convention in October.

Although the picture above, (which perhaps suggests a lot of delegates on the convention floor getting their voting instructions directly from caucus managers) is definitely a wild exaggeration,  there are many very valid and exciting use cases for the technology that will help political underdogs wield real influence at a state party convention. 

Use Cases
Imagine attending such a convention and getting a text message that says something like:

"Resolution committee considering affirming 'comprehensive immigration reform' now.  Pls proceed to Ballroom A to speak out." 

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