Now this is what I call a netroots base

Running for Office: It’s Like A Flamewar with a Forum Troll, but with an Eventual Winner

Sean Tevis’ innovative method of raising internet fundraising in his venture to oust and replace his current State Representative (basically equivalent to one of our State MPs?) in Kansas is an online comic strip.

When Sean Tevis decided to run for a seat in the Kansas Legislature, he faced a serious problem: money. Local political advisors warned the campaign novice that he would need a war chest of at least $26,000 to compete against his entrenched Republican rival.

Having calculated that if he could get 3000 people to donate $8.34 each, he would reach that target, he created the comic strip to garner attention from potential online donors. He’s sort of a one-man Get Up! campaign.

Apparently, no other candidate for State Representative in Kansas has ever had more than 644 donors, so there was a built-in news narrative if he could make it work. So did it? Well, there’s a bunch of news coverage online, as well as many bloggings.

How many similar efforts are we going to see in election contests in the immediate future, do you think?

H/T to one of my Best Mates on a mailing list

Categories: Life, media, Sociology, technology

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4 replies

  1. I gave him $10 a while back…Rob gave him the $8.34 a couple of days ago. He was telling we about this and I was “yeah been then done that, I sure I mentioned it…you never listen to me, lets go get a beer”
    good luck to him.

  2. I admit, I think it it awesome.
    I don’t think he’ll win, but that’s because I am a cynic.

  3. There was a big discussion on MetaFilter (where Tevis is a long time member) regarding his campaign – MeFi was one of the social networking sites that provided him with many (most?) of his donors.
    They discussed the demographics of the district in which he is running, and the Dem candidate in the last election managed a respectable loss despite low name recognition due to lack of funds. She advised Tevis to concentrate on doorknocking above all for getting constituents to know his face, and to then use the funds raised online for later publicity blitzes to ensure that the voters remember the name that goes with the face they know when it comes to election time.
    It strikes me as a strategy with a strong potential for success.

  4. I love this. Maybe it’s because I’m an information architect. I just sent it to all my US IA co-workers.
    I’m just sad that he can’t accept donations from non-Americans.

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