We’re getting ready to announce a public launch date for AskThem, our non-profit’s next flagship project – free & open-source, questions-and-answers with elected officials nationwide.
Once we launch, anyone can ask a question in our open public forum to any major State of the Union figure, such as Sen. Rand Paul:
With AskThem, we’ve developed a foundation for continual, structured, open public dialogue with elected officials at every level of government (federal, state, county and municipal). With open data for remixing & analysis in every U.S. city, state and Congressional district. All towards a more continual engagement with the people who represent us and any public figure with a verified Twitter account (such as much of the White House press pool).
But we’ve also created an open-source web platform for crowdsourcing questions during civic events, such as the #SOTU, or city council meetings, or an upcoming statewide election. And for an elected official who volunteers to participate as a verified responder on our non-profit, public-benefit questions-and-answers platform, he or she can agree to respond to the most-popular question from her constituents (and/or the public at large) in advance of the #SOTU and after the event.
See all publicly-submitted questions to a national politician, such as Sen. Majority Leader Harry Reid – and vote up the ones you support, then push for a public response to the most popular ones:
Sign up now at AskThem.io to see previews before we launch to the public – and if you’re an elected official at any level of government, sign up to become a verified responder, it’s free & open to everyone and responsibilities are simply to respond to a couple of popular questions per month on our open-source platform. Press, media, political bloggers, contact us to partner on future crowdsourced Q&A around events. Issue-based organizations, we can help connect your members to their elected officials and start e-petition campaigns at every level of government simply by their street address – get in touch to see an online demo before we launch. And charitable foundations, we’ve built a version of The White House’s “We The People” e-petition platform – for over 142,000 elected officials nationwide, and hundreds of thousands of verified Twitter accounts – please help us launch this much-needed civic infrastructure. Email david at ppolitics.org for a copy of our non-profit funding prospectus, and consider making a tax-exempt donation to support our open-source development.
Below, more sample screenshots of how individuals and organizations will be able to use AskThem to ask good questions of people in power during an event such as the #SOTU:
Ask a question you care about to your individual representatives, any elected official nationwide, or any verified Twitter account:
… and push for a response, for public accountability:
… partner with local media and issue-based organizations to get an answer to the civic & legislative questions you care about:
… and gather support for your issues, on a platform where when the signature threshold is reached for any elected official, we’ll deliver your question to them over email and social media, and document our efforts to receive a public response with you:
… after all, AskThem isn’t just for elected officials, but for any civic entity or public figure with a verified Twitter account:
… contact us anytime to see a sneak preview of AskThem, and sign up now for updates. Lots of exciting news to share very soon. To follow along, give us a ‘like’ on Facebook (we just started our AskThem pages on social media), add us on G+, and follow us on commercial micropublishing service at @AskThemPPF. Let us know what you think of the above screenshots and how you’ll use AskThem for question sessions with everyone who represents you. Excited to get AskThem out into the wild open web.