A free service makes it possible to message your congressmen or senators without having to talk to anyone
Modern life has a whole lot of irritations, petty and otherwise. But two things that will always be at the top of the list? Politicians, and talking on the phone.
Now, thanks to a new texting service, you can avoid both.
Resistbot is a new service that takes the hassle out of contacting corrupt politicians and letting them know they’re blowing it.
The service enables you to “write Congress in under two minutes” simply by texting “RESIST” to the number 50409. When you do, Resistbot responds with a request for your zip code so it can identify your local officials, then asks what you’d like to tell them. Resistbot then takes your message and faxes it, yes, faxes it, first to your state’s senators and then, your congressman (or woman).
Fast Company spoke to Resistbot about the service.
“Civic engagement isn’t a tools problem, it’s an engagement problem, and it hasn’t been solved yet,” says Jason Putorti, one of the volunteers who built Resistbot. “There’s tons of tools to contact Congress. If they worked well then they’d be as ubiquitous as Facebook, Twitter, or other services people engage with on a daily basis . . . Resistbot is just one more experiment in a long lineage, and our goal is that the user experience will help people engage regularly with the people that represent them.”
Nowadays, with such a divisive and destructive administration stirring up more controversy every day, ease of engagement is more important than ever. Sometimes getting on the phone is inconvenient, especially if you’re at work, a total introvert, or home with the kids. There are a variety of ways to contact officials, but Resistbot is one of the easiest, and the ability to send a personalized message may make it one of the most effective.
According to the President and CEO of the Congressional Management Foundation Brad Fitch, whose organization works with Congress and constituents to make their interactions more effective, “Smart constituents are individualizing those communications,” says Fitch. “Our research shows that that’s the big differentiator. It’s not the vehicle that they use to communicate the message, it’s the content, and that if individuals personalize their communications, and talk about the impact of a particular bill or an issue on them locally, that is going to have much more impact on congressional offices.”
Resistbot allows for each constituent to target their local politicians with their own specific message. Finally, a new piece of technology that helps cut through the clutter rather than add more to it.
I hate everything that’s happening in Washington these days and I hate talking on the phone, so Resistbot is the perfect solution. Two birds!
So, after you’ve deleted the first few vulgar and insulting messages, you can key in something as simple as “Vote against AHCA or I’ll vote against you, you stupid, greedy [REDACTED]!” and hit send. Not only are you making your displeasure known in as convenient a way as possible, you’re also helping create a cacophony of irritating beeping and buzzing throughout their office, adding injury to insult.
God bless America.