18 October 2007

And in this corner, Slatecard

We've all seen stories about how Democrats are leaving Republicans behind in online campaign fundraising. Act Blue, the dominant campaign finance portal for Democrats, has raised over $30 million since 2004.

Republicans are finding an appropriate response - and one-upping Act Blue, I think - with Slatecard. If I were a Republican, I'd want to take notice of this.

It's just starting out, but it looks like Slatecard takes the features that have stood the test of time at Act Blue - a list of "hot races," a wide range of campaigns to choose from, a blog, and so on - and adds some web 2.0 features that allow users to be more creative and communicative. Slatecard contributors can customize their own slate of candidates. They can also affix "badges" to their slates to show WHY they're contributing to the campaigns they choose - a position on a particualr issue, a revulsion to a particular Democrat, and so on. This sends a signal to candidates and helps them "follow the money." It's just one more opportunity to let political activists provide information along with financial support.

Full disclosure: I know one of Slatecard's founders, David All. We worked briefly together and I found him to be a creative, assertive, and entrepreneurial guy.

Republicans have some catching up to do online, but I think Slatecard will help them do it quicker than most people think. Will Act Blue adopt some of Slatecard's 2.0 coolness? Time will tell.


Jason said...

I saw this on my Twitter this morning - really interesting stuff. I'm definitely going to poke around here, because (regardless of my own political leanings) it looks like Slatecard really did some things right (no pun intended.) I originally thought that some of the Web 2.0 features of Barack Obama's campaign site were pretty innovative - linking with local groups, discussion groups about your particular pet causes - but I'm not sure it's taken off in the way that a general site that's not about a specific candidate has the potential to. Additionally, the "badges" are really cool and represent something I think that not enough 2.0 sites are tapping: the desire to identify via symbols your beliefs and your accomplishments (in the case of, say, the Xbox 360's achievements - full disclosure, I worked on the 360 PR team until June of 2007.)

Thanks for the heads-up, this is definitely a site to watch.

David said...

Cool Jason - thanks for the thoughts. I think the campaigns are making some snap decisions on technology tools. It's sometimes hard to innovate in an environment that is so day-to-day, but to be honest the political blogosphere has driven a lot of innovation in technology.

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