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Katy Grimes

FILIBUSTER: New App for Political Junkies, Wonks and Voters

 For most voters, making your voice heard by candidates and politicians feels like a lost cause. You fax, write, phone and email your elected officials, and at most, receive a form letter reply.

Those days look to be over… finally, a way to get your political voice heard. Derek Garnier has written a new political social App called “Filibuster” to make your political voice count.

Filibuster: an effort to prevent action in a legislature (such as the U.S. Senate or House of Representatives) by making a long speech or series of speeches.

It’s a way for the average person to chime in on politics instead of just Tweeting and arguing on Facebook. “Filibuster is the social app for all things political. Tell the politicians what you think w/ a click of the button. Change the world. Be heard,” the website explains.

I had the opportunity to interview Garnier, one of the founders, and designers of the new App, “Filibuster,” which allows user members to comment on political issues and discussions of the day, anonymously, without fear of reprisal.”This gives the average person a way to chime in on politics,” Garnier said. “It’s a way to get involved instead of just Tweeting.”

But it’s not anonymous the way so much of the Internet is; Filibuster allows you to use an alias to participate in the discussion, unlike Twitter or Facebook. Because your login requires a zip code, there are built in safeguards, which will allow abuse to be tracked and reported. And through the Filibuster rating system, you can block people – the political trolls most of us end up with on our Facebook posts. Garnier describes it as “community policing.” They’ve built in weighted responses, so if someone gets all negative votes on their comments, they sink to the bottom and aren’t read. Conversely, good commenters are seen by everybody.

Started by friends, Garnier said while Facebook is good for friends, family and cat videos, people report backlash for many of their political posts. Garnier said people who care about and follow politics needed a place to post without reprisal.

And the bonus is that Filibuster users will know that their messages will be sent directly to their elected politicians.

How the App Works

You provide your geographic location through your zip code, and the App locate find your Congress member, U.S. Senator, State Assembly member, State Senator, Governor, Mayor and the President. You can even add other politicians you follow, or wish to communicate with.

Filibuster lets users protect their identity while freely engaging in political discussion with the general population as well as micro-communities and politicians. You can share your thoughts with others who follow the same person, or you can keep your political thoughts on a more private level with a smaller group.

Filibuster will allow you to rank important news stories and send your comments to politicians. Filibuster will link you to polls and public opinion groups.

Filibuster” will be released October 14 via Google Play and the App Store. Go to the Filibuster website to follow the upcoming release, and “Like” Filibuster on Facebook at GetFilibuster. Garnier is looking for feedback and said they will continue to update Filibuster based on users’ feedback.


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