ThereâˆšÂ¢â€šÃ‡Â¨â€šÃ‘Â¢s one lesson the 2008 presidential election taught us that shouldnâˆšÂ¢â€šÃ‡Â¨â€šÃ‘Â¢t get lost in the student frenzies, impromptu street parades and âˆšÂ¢â€šÃ‡Â¨â‰ˆÃ¬ChangeâˆšÂ¢â€šÃ‡Â¨Â¬Ã¹ mantra that has taken a hold of T-shirts, coffee shop banter and front yard signage.
ItâˆšÂ¢â€šÃ‡Â¨â€šÃ‘Â¢s this: Barack ObamaâˆšÂ¢â€šÃ‡Â¨â€šÃ‘Â¢s historic victory was the results of a multi-channel grassroots movement. From social networking comments to door-knocking and youth-infused community dialogues, it proved that despite our countryâˆšÂ¢â€šÃ‡Â¨â€šÃ‘Â¢s vast ethnic, economic and technological divides, we can still unite, plant seeds and make things happen.
Politics aside, it was a successful experiment in old school sweat, shoe leather and charisma.
ThatâˆšÂ¢â€šÃ‡Â¨â€šÃ‘Â¢s why PolicyPitch is a dot-com with a fighting chance. The New Orleans-based start-up bases its platform on the idea of âˆšÂ¢â€šÃ‡Â¨â‰ˆÃ¬Power to the people,âˆšÂ¢â€šÃ‡Â¨Â¬Ã¹ and seeks to build a Web of community ideas and populist ideals.
It works like this: You can pitch a local idea and try to build support for your concept by campaigning. Likewise, you can also view otherâˆšÂ¢â€šÃ‡Â¨â€šÃ‘Â¢s hopes, dreams and agendas and chose whether or not to support their causes.
The site, still in beta, will need time and traffic as most of the ideas are New Orleans-centric, such as building new dog parks and bringing the Super Bowl to the Big Easy in 2014. But the navigation is breezy, the design is easy on the eyes, and the timing is ripe for a website like PolicyPitch to gain some momentum.
The next question will be whether even the most successful PolicyPitch campaigns can transcend online forums – and make it into town halls and state legislatures. Can PolicyPitch enact real change?