Frequently Asked Questions

Why do we need a new platform?

 We conducted a study and analysis of 48 civic technology organizations, tools and groups to see if all of Turnout's features are already available in one website or app. After analyzing the results of the study, it was clear to us that there is room in the civic tech space for an app like Turnout. Moreover, there were a couple of features that were not included in any of the reviewed technology, or were only included in a few of them, that are features of Turnout. We also learned that there are many groups and organizations we should be learning from and paying attention to as we develop Turnout.

Young people are spread across many mediums in their social media usage (Slack, Groupme, Instagram, Facebook...) and none of these platforms are conducive to connecting activists while capturing a majority of users. For the past few years, young people have been significantly less active on Facebook. The only platform that almost every young person is on is SnapChat; however, organizing via SnapChat isn’t viable as it doesn't have capability for event or web connection. A hub like Turnout could provide a mobile nexus for connecting activists. Before creating a new app, we investigated whether it was possible to create a link for youth activists without making a new platform. A Facebook group similar to PantSuit Nation was created and quickly got over 1700 members, however it was found that actually few young people were active on Facebook. A GroupMe was also created, and the same result was seen. One of the mechanisms Turnout will use to draw activists back to the app continually is the customized news feature. When building Turnout, we hope to use as many API's (like for messaging) as possible.

What is the timeline for creating Turnout?

As Marshall Ganz said, we are feeling the "urgency of now". We would like to get this app created as soon as possible. We are evaluating potential developers. Once we have chosen a developer, we hope to let the young people part of the Turnout Creation Team work with the developer(s) to help create the app.

How will events be initially added to the app, before crowd-sourcing begins?

Our Creation Team will add initial events to Turnout. We will start with the locations where our team has the most connections and then move outward from there. 

 Turnout is a fiscally sponsored non-profit by the Social Good Fund.

Image Credits: Getty Images, US National Archives

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