ActRed and going social
by azizhp, Mon Jul 16, 2007 at 04:49:32 AM EDT
I just saw over at RedState that there's an effort underway to create a right-wing version of ActBlue, called "Slatecard". It will work analogously to ActBlue, but the following caught my eye, from the description:
* Users can contribute donations to candidates that they support, and then "tag" the candidates with issues to help others find the candidate, e.g., "No Amnesty For Illegals" or "Fair Tax"; and
* Build a Slatecard of candidates that support your values which can be shared with your network through email, a website, facebook, or MySpace using Slatecard.com apps and widgets."
This brings up two issues in my mind.
First, ActBlue is certainly innovative but is intended to use simply as a tool. There's no way to "tag" a candidate as slatecrad proposes, and that's something which would be nice to see (either on ActBlue or on a competitor). The immediate benefit would be to help channel donations on a more granular basis; I might be interested in creating a slate of pro-muslim candidates, for example. The ability to tag would have to be limited to existing users who have already donated - before I can tag a candidate, I need to have made at least a token donation via the page. That should filter out the graffiti.
Second, the primary sites in the ProgSphere (ie the Short Head that Bowers talks about) often refer to Facebook, etc in the third person but do very little to actually embed functionality that would serve as a pathway for users to transit between them. Embedding and sharing your ActBlue seamlessly on facebook would be brilliant; the same shoudl be argued for myDD or Dailykos as well, however.
What I'd like to see is development of simple tools like buttons that let you submit a story on DK or myDD directly to digg and facebook, and on every User Info page have a one-click "add to my Friends" buttons also. We need to stop thinking of these blogs as blogs and start thinking of them in community terms; that means paying more than lip service to "communities" in large blog posts, but actually building functionality that lets the communities crosstalk and cross-fertilize.
(as a sidenote its a lot harder to dismiss the left netroots as firnge if it starts to overlap substantially with the far vaster social networking sites out there; plus it allows for more rapid diffusion of our arguments into those virgin spheres.)
As for stories, the glue that binds is RSS. Twitter creates an RSS feed; that feed can be imported into FaceBook as a Note; why not have an official myDD Facebook user? And then port the Breaking Blue to run exclusively off of Twitter? All the BB contributors shoudl sign up for Twitter; then you replace the BB sidebar section with the Twitter widget; and export teh RSS. A side benefit is that ANYONE can embed the Breaking Blue feed on their own blogs.
Thats just one example of the kind of way we can truly embrace the web2.0 stuff rather than just pointing to it and saying, "woah, cool". Lets actually USE it. brainstorm!