Inside Get FISA Right

Yesterday, two articles were published that provide some insight into the group behind Get FISA Right.

Dawn Teo, on Huffington Post, wrote a summary of the group’s history, and where it intends to go next. In it, she included this description of the planning group and the tools used:

The group leaders, all volunteers, come from all walks of life and have varied backgrounds in political activism. Two have professional community organizing experience. One has worked in public relations. Several are social science researchers. A handful are techies. Members of the leadership group range from political novices to long-time political activists. In addition to communicating through the original extended “Vote Against FISA” and leadership email groups, the group leaders also have almost-daily conference calls, a chat server that is active nearly 24 hours a day, a wiki for information sharing, Google docs to collaborate, and more. The group is recruiting new members every day through a Twitter, Facebook and other networking tools.

Next, one of the authors of this very blog had an essay published at techPresident, focusing on both the technological and social factors that helped make the Get FISA Right effort such a success:

…it’s not until technologies become ubiquitous and commonplace and, indeed, boring, do they enable profound social changes. For the Get FISA Right group, this meant two things. First, the technologies themselves had to be free, readily available, and easy to use. Tools like Wetpaint and Google Groups “pages,” and sites like Facebook meant there were platforms around which we could collaborate. But beyond the tools themselves, for this group, collaborating online was “boring.” Many of the group members were already well-versed in blogs and wikis, and were able to quickly acclimate to the unique social norms and cohesiveness required to be productive online.

Both are worthwhile reads (if we do say so ourselves!).

And please visit us at Get FISA Right — you can sign our open letter to Barack Obama, and help us decide the direction this group takes going forward.


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