Ideas for Change competition

Update, January 21: we finished #5 with 12285 votes.
Thanks all!

Please see
We’re Number 5! We’re Number 5!
and Time to celebrate! (and Ideas for Changeupdate) for more.



From Change.org's FAQ:

The top 10 rated ideas will be presented to the Obama Administration on Inauguration Day, January 20, 2009 as the "Top 10 Ideas for America." We will then launch a national campaign behind each idea and mobilize the collective energy of the millions of members of Change.org, MySpace, and partner organizations to ensure that each winning idea gets the full consideration of the Obama Administration and Members of Congress.

Get FISA Right, repeal the PATRIOT Act, and restore our civil liberties finished #2 in the Criminal Justice category, and #10 overall. Pierre Loiselle's Repeal the Patriot Act was #3 in Other (with Donovan Caesar's End the Patriot Act winding up at #5 in government reform and missing the finals). Civil liberties clearly have a lot of support with the crowd so far! However, the competition is tough ... we'll need to get our act together in the second round.

Please vote! If you're already logged in to change.org, just click on the Vote now button in the widget to the right. If not, please see the instructions here.


Promoting our idea


Our most successful first-round promotion was a guest-post on change.org's Criminal Justice blog. We emailed the MyBO list and Facebook group during the week of December 8, and put the widget on the front page of our web site and wiki. We didn't get any coverage in the blogosphere and media. Some of the other ideas had far more organized campaigns and got a lot more visibility ...

So let's do better this time. Here are some ideas. (Got some more? Please add them in the thread below!)

On change.org


  1. Revise the description of our idea to make it more compelling. Deadline: Wednesday, January 5. Your feedback wanted!
  2. Contact people who submitted/voted for other wiretapping-related ideas that didn't make the finals and ask for their help.
  3. Ask to do another guest blog post on the Criminal Justice blog (and maybe others)
  4. Co-promote with other ideas in the finals -- for example, Repeal the Patriot Act ... also, see the discussion at Should Get FISA Right endorse the “special prosecutor”idea?

On social networks


  1. Email the link to your friends and listservs. There's an "email friends" link on the idea page ... consider customizing it, or even rolling your own, to get some of your own personality in there so that it doesn't seem like spam.
  2. Post and Share the link on Facebook, MySpace, etc. (Facebook instructions here , MySpace help needed!)
  3. Find related groups and post on the walls/discussion boards (on FB/MySpace) or email users (MyBO) -- and contact the admins and ask them to mail the group. (list of Facebook groups and sample messages here, blog post coming soon.)
  4. Accept and forward the events on Facebook and MyBO, and remind people to help promote as well as vote. Facebook and MyBO events here. help needed on MySpace, please!
  5. Tweet it. Use the #fisa and #tcot (top conservatives on twitter, with lots of libertarians) hashtags. See our twitter page and the #fisa channel for examples and see the thread at the bottom for suggestions.
  6. Stand by for a major digg campaign or two. First attempt here.
  7. Start up a discussion thread about Ideas for Change on a message board, and include a brief mention of and link to our idea

In the blogosphere


  1. If you're a blogger, put the widget on your blog (see below for the code) and sign up as an "endorser" using the "click here to endorse this idea" link on the right-hand side of the page on change.org.
  2. Ask bloggers to cover us, include the widget, and sign up as "endorsers" -- more discussion here, endorsement thread here.
  3. Mention it in comments on blogs
  4. Mutual guest-blogging with other finalists? See discussion here.

In the media


  1. Pitch it as an interesting story for bloggers and journalists to cover -- for example, the huge amount of support for civil liberties both here and in change.gov's Open for Questions; or the bottom-up nature of the process; or involvement of the MySpace crowd and our social networking on MyBO; etc. etc.
  2. Co-promote with our new video. How? Suggestions wanted!If you blog, post about it, and include the handy widget (HTML code below)

And ...


  1. Ask non-profits to sign up as "endorsers" -- more discussion here.



HTML code for embedding the widget

WARNING: change.org's cut-and-paste embed code included a "web bug" (aka "clear gif") that transfers information from your site to gigya.com. Please consider using the web-bug-free code below instead. For more about web bugs, see EFF’s page.

<object classid="clsid:d27cdb6e-ae6d-11cf-96b8-444553540000" width="211" height="284" codebase="http://download.macromedia.com/pub/shockwave/cabs/flash/swflash.cab#version=6,0,40,0"><param name="name" value="IdeaForChange" /><param name="align" value="middle" /><param name="src" value="http://www.change.org/widget_flash/ideas.swf?xmlFile=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.change.org%2Fwidgets%2Fcontent%2Fchange_idea%2F28" /><param name="wmode" value="transparent" /><embed type="application/x-shockwave-flash" width="211" height="284" src="http://www.change.org/widget_flash/ideas.swf?xmlFile=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.change.org%2Fwidgets%2Fcontent%2Fchange_idea%2F28" wmode="transparent" align="middle" name="IdeaForChange"></embed></object>