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connect / 2015

Politics in 8 Seconds

Idea submitted in the My LA2050 Maker Challenge by Voter, LLC

Our mission is to take the friction out of becoming an informed voter. Answer a few simple questions to find out which political candidates have your best interests at heart, and have a track record to back it up.

In what areas of Los Angeles will you be directly working?

  • Central LA
  • San Fernando Valley
  • Westside
  • City of Los Angeles
  • We will be curating local election data for all of LA County, initially focusing on the larger municipalities.

How do you plan to use these resources to make change?

  • Engage residents and stakeholders
  • Expand a pilot or a program
  • Mobilize for systems change

How will your proposal improve the following “Connect” metrics?

  • Rates of volunteerism
  • Voting rates by race
  • Participation in neighborhood councils
  • Government responsiveness to residents’ needs (Dream Metric)

Describe in greater detail how you will make LA the best place to connect.

What We’re building an app that makes it fast, fun, and easy to become informed in any election. Simply answer a few questions and find out which politicians truly have your best interests at heart, and have a track record to back it up.

Our mission is to take the friction out of becoming an informed voter, displaying the candidates and propositions that align with your beliefs, as well as where to go to vote, when to be there, and what to bring. We aim to be a one-stop-shop for election information.

We were recently featured on 790 KABC, Built In LA, and The Washington Post.

Why Last year, LA county had the lowest voter participation of any county in the state, with local election turnout dropping as low as 8%.

Information is greatly lacking when it comes to local elections. When people are uninformed, they don’t vote, or worse, they vote on issues they don’t know about. In both scenarios, we end up with a government that is not representative of its people.

According to Pew, 57% of 18-to-29 year olds get political news from social networking apps and nowhere else. The stage is primed to engage millennials and younger generations on their turf.

How We’ve designed an experience that is fast, fun and engaging, while the real magic happens under the hood. Our matching algorithm does all the heavy lifting, weighing millions of data points to find the perfect candidates for you.

Thanks to new open data initiatives, we now have access to up-to-the-minute governmental and political data. This allows us to take an unbiased, numbers-based approach.

Voter weighs a politician’s voting record, public agenda, personal views, talking points, and several other variables to arrive at a match. The app presents this information as a percentage, describing how closely your views align with each candidate.

Who Our team has extensive experience in the fields of graphic design and user interfaces, mobile app development, policy and data analysis, and start-up user growth. We recently launched in beta, and just brought marketing and public relations experience on board.

When Voter launched in the App Store on Citizenship Day (Sept.17) 2015, and will be available on web and Android January 1st, 2016. Local election data will be available for Los Angeles county starting in 2016.

Where Based in sunny Los Angeles, California :) We will begin curating local elections in the Los Angeles area this Winter-Spring.

Please explain how you will evaluate your work.

Voting by race - We’ll use demographic data from Facebook logins to track users’ voting rates by ethnicity, age, gender, and location. We respect privacy, and all data is anonymous in that we can never identify it to a specific user.

Rates of volunteerism - Compare the NCoCs (National Conference on Citizenship) annual volunteer metrics from the past to track progress in LA county. We will survey users at regular intervals, comparing our own results with the NCoCs.

Neighborhood council participation - We plan to curate information on Los Angeles’s 96 neighborhood council elections. We will encourage and track neighborhood council participation by connecting users with councils in their area, and allowing them to check-in via social media.

Government responsiveness - Periodically survey our user-base to gauge whether they feel responsiveness has improved. Our impact will be magnified by giving politicians insight into the issues their constituents prioritize most.

How can the LA2050 community and other stakeholders help your proposal succeed?

  • Money (financial capital)
  • Volunteers/staff (human capital)
  • Publicity/awareness (social capital)
  • Network/relationship support
  • Quality improvement research