Vocem lets you have a voice in politics
Elections are coming up, and communicating what issues you find important could be a challenge. but political app Vocem is looking to change that.
Vocem allows its users to take photos of political topics and issues, categorize them, add comments, and send thoughts to their local representatives in the House of Representatives or Senate. The app was released last week.
“It’s meant to remove a lot of friction in reaching out to political figures, your elected representatives specifically,” founder Shane Barnhill said. “It’s a community meant for that purpose, sharing your political opinions.”
The app uses location services to determine a user’s elected officials in that region. The user can then tap on them and communicate with them through different outlets such as Twitter and e-mail.
When a user creates a new post and adds commentary, the default option is Twitter.
Barnhill hopes that this will remove a lot of the friction and research behind the reaching out to government officials. The app even refreshes dada depending on what region you’re in.
Barnhill wants to reach out to specifically to people who have difficulty voicing their opinions.
“We’ll cast a wide net,” Barnhill said. “It may make more sense for the younger generation because everyone has their smartphone and they’re used to communicating more visually.”
Barnhill got the idea of the app a couple years ago when he wanted to reach out to his representative and found it painful to research and write an e-mail.
“What would be a better way to do this?” he said. The app has been a year or so in the making.
Barnhill also sees other potential for his app besides connecting citizens with their elected officials and the political community as a whole.
“There’s some really valuable long term data for politicians and political groups,” Barnhill said. “As the info is aggregated, some really interesting trends will be surfaced that people will care
As the app grows, Vocem will also add a broader group of elected officials. Vocem is currently available on iOS and will be available on Android devices in the future.
“[The Android app] will certainly come. There’s obviously a massive user base there but right now we are focused on refining the user experience,” Barnhill said.
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