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From Wikimania 2012 • Washington, D.C., USA

This is a rejected submission for Wikimania 2012.

Submission no.


Title of the submission
Type of submission (workshop, tutorial, panel, presentation)
Author of the submission
Zach Fisch
E-mail address
Country of origin
Affiliation, if any (organization, company etc.)
Populus (not-for-profit organization)
Personal homepage or blog
Abstract (at least 300 words to describe your proposal)

Last summer, I noticed that that the internet-literate population had nowhere to engage with their government on the web. I discussed it with my likeminded friends and decided to do something that I hope will be transformative for political discourse just the way Facebook was for social discourse. With that in mind, we are developing Populus with the goal of improving democracy.

Populus is a political social network that promotes transparency and communication between citizens, advocacy groups, and elected officials by providing the tools and access to equip a more politically influential populace. Populus is dedicated to improving methods of political organization. It provides a framework for users to engage in political movements, connect with elected officials, and research their government. Our presentation will focus on three issues:

1) Money has become requisite to running for office; a candidate needs money to gain exposure and votes;

2) There is no one website that currently offers a non-aligned, non-biased perspective of the political spectrum

3) It is too difficult to effect social change that results in real legislation via the internet

We will also discuss coalitions, which serve as an influential gathering place that allows newer users and groups to gather support for the issues they care about, and send a strong, clear message to representatives. Let’s use the example of bullet trains. If you decide you’re very much in favor of bullet trains, you can start a coalition, and recruit advocacy groups and fellow users who are also in favor. Before you know it, a politician may take a look at your coalition and decide it’s in their interest to take up your cause. We will address why we chose to be non-profit: In order to maintain the website’s integrity and to reinforce our commitment to a user-driven experience, and to eliminate the pressure to sell users' information and sell ads.

Our main goal is to increase the efficiency of politics in America, and that will come through communication, transparency, and access for all.

Length of presentation/talk
20 Minutes
Will you attend Wikimania if your submission is not accepted?
Slides or further information (optional)
Special request as to time of presentations

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