confusion between petitions and letters

Kyoto Kid's Avatar

Kyoto Kid

11 May, 2020 09:13 PM

This is't relating to comments or diaries but to emails I receive for signing petitions. Often time I will see an email that indicated ly a signature is needed and evne claiming to be a petition, but when I open it, instead turns out to be a letter to my senators representative.. The trouble with these is they have required topics I need to select to submit the letter(s). Frequently the topics in these lists do not always match the concern being put forth so it becomes a bit frustrating to find something that is even a remotely close match. These topics most likely just are filters for an automated system that spits out an appropriate form response, the "letter" itself never reaching the intended recipient or for that matter, even a live assistant/aide.. In this case, I feel petitions have far more impact. as those do end up at the proper offices.

When the email says "sign the petition", it needs to be an actual petition.which just requires an simple electronic signature.

Thank you.

  1. Support Staff 1 Posted by Daily Kos Staff on 11 May, 2020 10:50 PM

    Daily Kos Staff's Avatar

    Hello, and thanks for your comment.

    You are correct that the letters to elected officials carry subject categories that do not always fit the topic of the action. That's because each office does create its own set of choices which they supply to us. We have no control over what they provide.

    You also raise an interesting question about the relative efficacy of each format. I can appreciate your annoyance in getting a standard letter from your official which may or may not respond in detail to your own comment. It does seem, however, that these communications are read, not merely processed automatically. When you do find a mismatch between the subject category and the text of your letter, it may be worth a moment of your time to call out that discrepancy and suggest some better subjects.

    If there is an issue covered in a petition that seems particularly important to you, one for which you'd like a personal reply, you are probably better off lifting the talking points from our sample letter and composing an individual email to your senator/representative. In the end, what really matters is getting our message delivered; while we'd like to be able to tally the actions that our site generates, we also seek to promote better communication between constituents and their elected officials. Nowadays, effective electronic communication is going to be even more crucial than ever, since more and more staff will be working remotely with limited access to mailed documents.

    I hope that addresses your questions. Thanks for your support of the site's mission.

  2. Daily Kos Staff closed this discussion on 11 May, 2020 10:50 PM.

  3. Kyoto Kid re-opened this discussion on 12 May, 2020 12:20 AM

  4. 2 Posted by Kyoto Kid on 12 May, 2020 12:20 AM

    Kyoto Kid's Avatar

    As I have mentioned, there have been a number of times the email I
    receive use the term "petition" in the body and button to open, but when I
    open them, I see the "Start Writing" button instead of the "Add Your Name"
    one. That is where part of my frustration comes from.

    If it's a Letter please say so.

    I tend to write my own personal email letters directly to whoever I wish to
    express my concern to in which I can better detail points as well as
    include relevant attachments. Doing so also posts a copy in my "sent" box
    as a backup. I am likely not the only one to do this.


  5. Support Staff 3 Posted by Daily Kos Staff on 12 May, 2020 12:29 AM

    Daily Kos Staff's Avatar

    Ah, I see. Thanks for the additional detail.

    You have a point about the generic "petition" label. I'm not sure if we have much control over that terminology, but I will check into it.

    Glad to hear it. Whatever fosters this communication loop is what we hope to support.

  6. Daily Kos Staff closed this discussion on 12 May, 2020 12:29 AM.

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