Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

Is Your Neighbor a Democrat? Obama Has an App for That
Pro Publica ^ | 8-3-12 | Lois Beckett

Posted on 08/03/2012 8:39:20 PM PDT by GR_Jr.

Curious how many Democrats live on your block? Just download the Obama campaign's new mobile app.

The app, released last week, includes a Google map for canvassers that recognizes your current location and marks nearby Democratic households with small blue flags. For each targeted address, the app displays the first name, age and gender of the voter or voters who live there: "Lori C., 58 F, Democrat."

All this is public information, which campaigns have long given to volunteers. But you no longer have to schedule a visit to a field office and wait for a staffer to hand you a clipboard and a printed-out list of addresses.

With the Obama app, getting a glimpse of your neighbor's political affiliation can take seconds.

While The New York Times dubbed the app "the science-fiction dream of political operatives," some of the voters who appear in the app are less enthusiastic about it.

"I do think it's something useful for them, but it's also creepy," said Lori Carena, 58, a long-time Brooklyn resident, when she was shown the app. "My neighbors across the street can know that I'm a Democrat. I'm not sure I like that."

It's unclear if the app displays all registered Democrats who live in a certain area, or only a subset of voters President Obama's campaign is trying to reach....

(Excerpt) Read more at propublica.org ...


TOPICS: News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: bigbrother; heresyoursign; jackassapp; obama; obamacampaign; ofa; organizingforamerica; privacy; rebuildthedream
...continued:

Asked about the privacy aspects of the new app, a spokesperson for the Obama campaign wrote that "anyone familiar with the political process in America knows this information about registered voters is available and easily accessible to the public."

The information included in the app has "traditionally been available to anyone who walks into a campaign field office," said the spokesperson, who declined to be named.

While the app makes voter information instantly available, it displays only a small cluster of addresses at a time. It has built-in mechanisms to detect when people are misusing the data, "such as people submitting way too many voter contacts in a short period of time," the spokesman said.

"The campaign is strongly committed to ensuring the safety and privacy of the public and follows up with appropriate action, including alerting appropriate authorities if necessary, in any case of abuse or inappropriate behavior," said the spokesperson. "Any voter who requests not to be contacted again is immediately removed from any provided to volunteers."

This isn't the first time campaigns have released digital tools that make voter information freely available.

Both the Obama and Romney campaigns currently have online calling tools that give anyone who registers for their websites the names and phone numbers of voters to contact.

In 2008, the Obama campaign's "Neighbor to Neighbor" program allowed volunteers to use their home computers to print out lists of names and addresses to contact.

Two years later, the Democratic group Organizing for America, formed to keep mobilizing the president's supporters after Obama was elected, released a mobile app that was in some ways a prototype of Obama's new app. Volunteers in the 2010 midterm elections could use their mobile phones to map voters in their immediate vicinity and then send in responses from the voters they had contacted, which eliminated the need for clipboards and printed lists.

Natalie Foster, who was the new media director of Organizing for America, said the tools used in 2010 had built-in privacy limits, "where you are only given a certain number of voters that you could conceivably canvass. If somebody goes above that limit, or is just obviously clicking a button over or over, we'll just shut it down."

Privacy "was definitely a consideration and something that was focused on, to make sure people aren't just going in and downloading a lot of data," said Joshua Hendler, the former director of technology for Organizing for America.

Foster, who is now the CEO of the economic advocacy group Rebuild the Dream, and Hendler, who now works for PR firm Hill and Knowlton Strategies, said that making voter information more open makes the political process more democratic, because it lowers the barrier for people to get involved in political campaigns.

Shaun Dakin, a voter privacy advocate and longtime critic of political robocalling, flagged the Obama app last week as a "total privacy fail."

Dakin, who criticized the Obama campaign's 2008 Neighbor to Neighbor program on similar grounds, said voters should have the right to opt out of being contacted by political campaigns.

He also questioned why the Obama app included the ages of nearby voters, another piece of information that people might not want to have made public.

Lori Carena, the Brooklyn voter, said she doesn't object to having canvassers knock on her door. In fact, she said she wishes it happened more often in New York, a state that's such a Democratic stronghold she feels the campaign isn't interested in hearing her concerns.

Asked what she feels is the difference between the traditional way of canvassing — with voter names and addresses on a printed-out list — and the new mobile app, she said, "Well, I just don't get all this new stuff with computers and apps. That's probably more creepy to me."

Even low-tech tools used to distribute voter data can upset some voters. The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported this June that a liberal group in Wisconsin was sending fliers to voters which included a list of their neighbors and whether they had voted in 2008 and 2010.

The fliers encouraged recipients to help get out the vote for the recall election of Gov. Scott Walker. Some voters were angry that their names and addresses were being distributed publicly.

"I think this is invasion of my privacy and every other woman's privacy. It's like — 'Here, this is where all the women are,'" one woman told the Journal Sentinel.

Jonathan Zittrain, a Harvard law professor and the co-founder of the Berkman Center for Internet & Society, said the Obama app represented a significant shift. While voter data has been "technically public," it is usually accessed only by political campaigns and companies that sell consumer data.

He said it was "heartening" that the app makes data available to citizens who want to talk to their neighbors about their political choices.

"The purpose of this app may be Democrats visiting Democrats. I can see apps where you ask Republicans to visit Democrats and Democrats to visit Republicans."

"If we're comfortable enough to have [this information] go into the maw of big data processors, both political and otherwise, it seems consistent for neighbors to talk to neighbors over it," he said.

"Much of our feelings around privacy are driven by what you might call status-quo-ism," he said, so many people may feel that the app is creepy simply because it represents something new.

1 posted on 08/03/2012 8:39:35 PM PDT by GR_Jr.
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

To: GR_Jr.
Jonathan Zittrain, a Harvard law professor and the co-founder of the Berkman Center for Internet & Society, said "Much of our feelings around privacy are driven by what you might call status-quo-ism, so many people may feel that the app is creepy simply because it represents something new."

STFU, Jonathan.

2 posted on 08/03/2012 8:46:15 PM PDT by Talisker (One who commands, must obey.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: GR_Jr.

And if Obama is elected, the police will be given an app to track down where Republicans live < /paranoia mode, but only slightly>


3 posted on 08/03/2012 8:50:05 PM PDT by KarlInOhio (Recycled Olympic tagline Shut up, Bob Costas. Shut up! Shut up! Shut up! Shut up! Shut up! Shut up!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: GR_Jr.; Carry_Okie; clamper1797; EggsAckley; expat_brit; hedgetrimmer; Jack Black; jahp; ...
Curious how many Democrats live on your block?

Dude, I live in Santa Freaking Cruz County, CA. It's pretty much a given that they're all libtards.

CЯUZIO
>> PING <<
Send FReepmail if you want on/off the SANTA CЯUZ COUNTY CA ping list
Click for Santa Cruz, California Forecast
This is why we can't have nice things
The List of Ping Lists

4 posted on 08/03/2012 8:51:23 PM PDT by martin_fierro (< |:)~)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: martin_fierro

Pretty much. I use to live in Felton and Brookday throughout high skrewel and to this day I go over there once or twice a month.

Total lefties with the exception of about 4 or 5 people I know.


5 posted on 08/03/2012 8:54:39 PM PDT by Vendome (Don't take life so seriously, you won't live through it anyway)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 4 | View Replies]

To: martin_fierro

I guess Brookday is spelled Brookdale....LOL


6 posted on 08/03/2012 8:55:22 PM PDT by Vendome (Don't take life so seriously, you won't live through it anyway)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 4 | View Replies]

To: GR_Jr.

That means they have a similar app for Republicans. Just paint a freaking target one me already.


7 posted on 08/03/2012 8:57:32 PM PDT by TheRhinelander
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: GR_Jr.

Thieves have to love this. It’s like putting a blue flag on all the unarmed houses.


8 posted on 08/03/2012 9:00:02 PM PDT by day10 (Integrity has no need of rules.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: GR_Jr.

So we find out why the census was taken over by the white house, and the democrat party focus goes to their kind... pre-election.

Now what are they going to use that information for post-election?

Buehler?

Anyone?


9 posted on 08/03/2012 9:02:25 PM PDT by glock rocks (optimist / pessimist? I'm an awesomist - There's a dragon in that glass!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: GR_Jr.

So who paid to develop this App?


10 posted on 08/03/2012 9:06:37 PM PDT by petitfour
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: petitfour

Probably Organizing for America... which is probably Soros.


11 posted on 08/03/2012 9:17:29 PM PDT by piasa (Attitude adjustments offered here free of charge)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 10 | View Replies]

To: day10

Or stars on coats.


12 posted on 08/03/2012 9:22:38 PM PDT by hotshu (Redistribution of wealth by the government is nothing but theft under the color of law.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 8 | View Replies]

To: GR_Jr.

Grrrrrr.
Union thugs will LOVE this app.

And the moral of this story?
Lock your doors always.
Get more ammo.
Never be unarmed.


13 posted on 08/03/2012 9:32:32 PM PDT by RandallFlagg (Obama hates Mexicans (Fast and Furious))
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: GR_Jr.

Interesting... The app will not work (properly anyhow) in MN since we do not register party affiliation.


14 posted on 08/03/2012 9:43:07 PM PDT by jurroppi1
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: RandallFlagg

I agree with you.

I am more afraid of left-wing thugs with this technology than I am the government.

In liberal strong holds, the government will just look the other way when left-wing terrorist fringe groups will come after you and your property, just like they look the other way when illegals prey on Americans.

If there is ever a reason to be armed to the teeth, this is it.

Unfortunately, in this day and age, defending yourself against liberal terrorism would be considered a hate crime, and the victim will end up being arrested.


15 posted on 08/03/2012 9:48:58 PM PDT by radpolis (Liberals: You will never find a more wretched hive of scum and villainy)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 13 | View Replies]

To: GR_Jr.

If I was a criminal, I could use this App to identify potentially unarmed targets.


16 posted on 08/03/2012 9:49:43 PM PDT by wjcsux ("In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act." - George Orwell)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: GR_Jr.; All
Now that you have read this article about this APP.....

Google or Bing : Obamaphones

Here is one link: Obamaphone.net

Here's a Rush link with him discussing the Obamaphones. Fact Check.org claims this is a "FALSE RUMOR" and uses the Annenberg Project in Chicago as a reference study...(yeah the SAME Annenburg Project that Bill Ayers AND Obama stole from in the 90's.)

From other FR articles I have read, there are at least a MILLION of these phones and you and I pay for a lot of them, but I'll bet most folks reading this don't have one, but A LOT of "folks" do. Obama backing folks.

If this doesn't help make SOME FOLKS wake up for this 2012 election season AND beyond if Obama wins.......

17 posted on 08/03/2012 9:50:06 PM PDT by musicman (Until I see the REAL Long Form Vault BC, he's just "PRES__ENT" Obama = Without "ID")
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 12 | View Replies]

To: musicman

Aren’t they for IPhones? I was going to try to download on my BB (just for a hoot).


18 posted on 08/03/2012 9:59:31 PM PDT by RushIsMyTeddyBear (Bocephus hits a home run! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rt_vjPqAVzI)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 17 | View Replies]

To: RushIsMyTeddyBear
I don't know either way. Sorry no help!!


19 posted on 08/03/2012 10:04:44 PM PDT by musicman (Until I see the REAL Long Form Vault BC, he's just "PRES__ENT" Obama = Without "ID")
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 18 | View Replies]

To: KarlInOhio

I suspect that that is 0bama’s real purpose. Everything he does is nefarious..


20 posted on 08/03/2012 10:16:49 PM PDT by sheik yerbouty ( Make America and the world a jihad free zone!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 3 | View Replies]

To: GR_Jr.

This is readily available at your local county elections office.....sheesh.


21 posted on 08/03/2012 10:25:10 PM PDT by goodnesswins (What has happened to America?)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: GR_Jr.

Useful information for when the black marias roll.


22 posted on 08/03/2012 11:07:35 PM PDT by Mike Darancette (Obamaid has to go.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: RushIsMyTeddyBear; musicman; GR_Jr.

Is this the program you’re referring to?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LjAjAvxDkfk&feature=share


23 posted on 08/04/2012 3:38:15 AM PDT by carriage_hill (Harry Reid [PERVERT-NV] has Vickie-the-goat in lingerie and stiletto heels, tied-up in his office.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 18 | View Replies]

To: KarlInOhio
< /paranoia mode, but only slightly>

Just because your paranoid doesn't mean they really aren't out to get you.

24 posted on 08/04/2012 5:09:06 AM PDT by voicereason (The RNC is the "One-night stand" you wish you could forget.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 3 | View Replies]

To: carriage_hill

Thanks for the link!! Now imagine millions of Obamaphones that Barry can text and email to to "create" whatever mayhem he needs for re-election. A whole army of obots in complete communication with each other and their leader and an app to tie them all together.

(OBTW....and WE paid for them....)

25 posted on 08/04/2012 7:44:09 AM PDT by musicman (Until I see the REAL Long Form Vault BC, he's just "PRES__ENT" Obama = Without "ID")
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 23 | View Replies]

To: GR_Jr.

Thank God I live in Oklahoma. There’s only about 4 Democrats left in the entire state. (Not really, but they are getting scarce.)


26 posted on 08/04/2012 9:30:44 AM PDT by ops33 (Senior Master Sergeant, USAF (Retired))
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: martin_fierro
Asked about the privacy aspects of the new app, a spokesperson for the Obama campaign wrote that "anyone familiar with the political process in America knows this information about registered voters is available and easily accessible to the public."

Imagine this kind of app in the hands of a regulatory bureaucrat, applying selective enforcement of environmental laws or deciding whether to provide fire protection upon the basis of party registration.

27 posted on 08/04/2012 9:49:48 AM PDT by Carry_Okie (The Slave Party Switcheroo: Economic crisis! Zero's eligibility Trumped!! Hillary 2012!!!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 4 | View Replies]

To: KarlInOhio; GR_Jr.
And if Obama is elected, the police will be given an app to track down where Republicans live < /paranoia mode, but only slightly>

How about BEFORE the election?

What if Republicans are mapped out and targeted the day before the election, and Dem operatives "arrange" for these people to be "inconvenienced" on their way to their local polling place?

Possible scenarios:

1. Vandalism to property (house vandalized).
2. Vandalism to car (flat tire).
3. Staged/false family emergency call.
4. Neighborhood "emergency" that blocks the way to the polling place.

Add your own. I'm only being slightly paranoid.

28 posted on 08/04/2012 1:35:25 PM PDT by thecodont
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 3 | View Replies]

Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794
FreeRepublic.com is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson