A few weeks ago I was sitting down by the Ferry Building, feeding Marco a little lunch and letting him crawl around on the nice grass while the folks in suits grinned at his cuteness. A scene was playing out next to us that everyone who lives in San Francisco or has visited over the past few months has probably witnessed: a guy with a clipboard making the rounds, picking up signatures for one of the mayoral candidates. This person to person signature gathering was one of the positive byproducts of the city's public financing law, and it's one of the ways that candidates with real people power backing them have an advantage.
As he got a little closer I eavesdropped shamelessly and noticed how tight his pitch was: personal but not too personal, right on message, brief and compelling. I didn't see a single person say no to him! So when he approached us I told him what I thought of his skills, a little about Democracy Dashboard, and asked him if I could grab some video of him. He said sure but he'd have to check with the communications folks at the campaign. (like I said, he was good) So he checked in, got the OK, and here's his pitch:
This is a succinct and powerful reminder of the real power of a well-crafted endorsement. This is the power of deliberative democracy that we're tapping into with the current version of Democracy Dashboard. It's what the team realized was really working when we used the site to vote in November of 2010, and this is what we're focused on getting the most out of in the San Francisco mayoral election coming up this November.
Maybe this video is leaving you wondering if we're going to do video endorsements on the site. The answer is: definitely! As great as it is to read people's quick summaries of their thinking (what they type into the "Why" box in the position widget), there's something about the direct connection you get from video. We're planning on supporting that real soon.