Rocky Mtn News aims but misses on DEM vs GOP GOTV operations

Today's Rocky Mountain News (Oct 28, 2006) has an interesting article by journalist Chris Barge GOP Voting Machine Keeps Dems on Toes, about the Colroado Republican GOTV operation and its use of datamining, microtargetting and sophisticated calling operations. The thrust of the article was how the GOP has a better operation than the Dems.

The article is not bad as far as it goes, but (as usual), the reporter misses some important context by not doing more research. If I may point Chris Barge toward some additional details, his next article might be better.

D-R Technoloy Gap Decreasing

The Dems have in fact realized the importance of computer systems, datamining and microtargetting are for their field operations. Yes, we are coming from behind, but let's look at our own advantages.

(1) Under Howard Dean, the DNC is putting together a big computer system capable of sophisticated microtargetting, mailing list generation and GOTV.

(2) A competing big database is pushed by Harold Ickes (advisor to Hillary Clinton) and George Soros.

(3) MoveOn.org is another non-party but supportive organization which has already invested substantially in database technology, and has installed very sophisticated, web-enabled calling software that allows for centralized or distributed GOTV efforts.

(4) Here in Colorado the new "VAN" system is already in use by democratic GOTV and field operations. The system is very full-featured, and includes detailed tracking of all kinds of useful (or not) data like comments, horoscope, and likely ethnicity of the voters last name.

(5) Blogs, DailyKos, ActBlue, Wiki. Who needs Fox News, daily newspapers or a fancy database when you have millions of people posting information about campaigns, contributing money and getting their news and GOTV from the Internet.

Tags: Chris Barge, Computers, Datamining, GOTV, Microtargetting, Rocky Mountain News (all tags)

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