At this time of year in the United States there is a massive amount of marketing going on. Political marketing. Email in-boxes and physical mail boxes alike are stuffed with glossy literature spinning their own story.
My wife saves all of the mailings in a big pile. Then we take the time to go through them, sort them out and try to decide who to believe. We invariably call a couple of people more involved, that we trust, to tell us how they are going to vote. We put it all together and then head off to the polls.
Recent years have been even more difficult as the number of propositions has grown. You want to make the right decisions on those, but often don't have any reliable information.
There are all kinds of polls out there, except a personal poll of people I trust. It occurred to us we could make a tool people could use to find, assemble and view the opinions of their friends.
So we made just such a tool, we call it Pollstir and it is free for anyone to use. Think of it as your own personal pollster and our little gift to a great country.
Here is how it works. You pick a ballot for your state and invite friends to "vote" and leave comments as well. You view their responses with interactive charts. Clicking on the charts will display the "reasons" behind the votes.
You can also enter PollstirIDs of others to include in your "mixins". So if you want the opinions of candidates, columnists, talk-show hosts, and celebrities you could just type in their PollstirID.
Our hope is that our little tool will help all voters, regardless of party, become more informed and therefore better voters. Just as your customer's comments about your business help their friends to "vote" on visiting your business.