On Recent Developments

Civic Toolbox

The Civinomics development team has been busy over the summer and have been rolling out a number of new features in the last couple weeks.

Organizations

Organizations can now sign up for Civinomics membership. Organization members have different privileges than individual members in that they cannot vote on ideas and initiatives (sorry Citizen’s United, corporation are not people!) Instead, organizations can post public positions in support or opposition to ideas and initiatives. Members can then comment on those public position statements. This provides organizations a powerful way to demonstrate their positions on things under consideration in their community.

Over the next several weeks, we’ll be adding additional capabilities to organization profiles, including a forum where discussions related to the organization can take place, the ability to rate organizations and the ability to sign up for updates or newsletters from organizations.

Jurisdictions

When you sign up for Civinomics membership, we ask you for your home zip code. We use the zip code to know what your City, County, State and Country geographic jurisdictions are. When you log in to your Civinomics account, your home page is displayed. On your home page is a row of flags for your jurisdictions. Click on a flag to see just the activity related to that jurisdiction, click on the View full profileĀ  link to display the profile for that jurisdiction, which will include all of the activity for the jurisdiction, some census information about the jurisdiction, upcoming meetings for the jurisdiction, interactive sample ballots for upcoming elections, and the listeners for the jurisdiction.

Listeners

Listeners are elected officials or agency or organization representatives responsible for the civic administration of a jurisdiction.

Previously, listeners were associated with specific Civinomics workshops. We’ve changed listeners to be associated with geographic or civic jurisdictions. Listeners receive weekly email digests of the Civinomics activity for their jurisdiction to keep them up to date on the local civic conversation.

Add Your Idea, Information Resource or Discussion Topic

If you have an idea, information resource or discussion topic for your City, County, State or Country, now you can post it directly to the jurisdiction where it will be displayed with the activity related to the jurisdiction. Previously, ideas, resources and discussions could only be added to workshops and initiatives. Have a great idea for your city? Post it!

Sample Ballots

This week, we’re busy entering the information for the new interactive sample ballot for the upcoming November 4 General Election. You’ll be able to use the online sample ballot in the same way as the paper sample ballots sent to your home by the local elections department. Unlike the paper sample ballots, you’ll be able to cast votes and add comments.

Remember, it’s just a sample ballot, don’t forget to vote at your polling place on November 4!

Community Curators

There is quite a bit of work involved in keeping jurisdiction related information up to date. Community Curators are endowed by the Civinomics admins with the ability to upload jurisdiction flags, enter data for jurisdiction meetings and elections and keep the list of jurisdiction listeners up to date. Soon, Community Curators will be able to extend the database of jurisdictions and add new jurisdictions not already supported beyond Zip Code, City, County, State and Country, such as water districts or county supervisor and congressional districts. Over time, we hope to engage more Civinomics members as Community Curators so they can help keep their local fellow citizens up to date.

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