29 September, 2020

Fight voter intimidation. See something, say something.

icon Fight voter intimidation,SeeSay2020,See something say something,voter intimidation,voter suppression
See Say 2020 is a free app which lets voters report instances of voter suppression and intimidation.

"Trump supporters seemingly attempting to physically intimidate voters and block them from a polling place in Fairfax, Virginia..." - Bipartisan Report

Voter intimidation has no place in a fair election. It's hard to counter it The press has a hard time keeping track of a large number of instances. Trolls and bots often swamp Facebook with false reports that it amplifies. Hotlines get overloaded with numerous calls. A simple way for voters to report incidents of voter suppression is needed which can screen and prioritize reports and alert the public, influencers, the press and groups working to protect voting rights. The solution has report results in real-time and be able to handle very large volumes of reports.

See Something, Say Something (See Say 2020) converts citizen reported instances of voter suppression into real time maps and alerts. It was first launched during the 2018 midterms and its real time dashboard was featured by Samantha Bee and NBC. See Say 2020 is an improved version for the general election that runs on any smartphone without having to instal an app. Submissions are first validated by teams of volunteers before being shown on a map.

Help us let people know about See Say so they can report problems the face while trying to vote. Groups working to protect voting rights can get real time alerts for free and also access a people-owned database of incidents of voter suppression for future action.

See Say converts citizen reported instances of voter suppression into real time maps and alerts.

How it works

SeeSay2020 is built on the ESRI platform which powers many critical applications including the John Hopkins COVID-19 Dashboard and NOAA's Realtime Hurricane Tracker. Voter suppression and subverting democracy is as dangerous as COVID-19 and hurricanes.

Voters click on this link to report an incident of voter suppression. This information includes location, time, the nature of the incident and other details. These reports are screened and prioritized by a team of volunteers from Students for Justice. Incidents that include any word (such as 'guns' and 'violence') from a pre-defined list and multiple reports from the same voting location are prioritized higher. The results are presented on a map, dashboard and alerts to voting rights groups.

Report instances of voter suppression and intimidation with the free See Say 2020 app.
Real-time map shows instances of voter suppression and intimidation.

Roll out

A coalition including Black American Musicians Association (BAM), Black Music Action Coalition (BMAC), Reclaim Our Vote, Black Voters Matter, VoteRiders, Trust The Vote, BlackHer and Voting Rights Are Civil Rights are spearheading the rollout of SeeSay2020. Performers are a key part of the coalition with their power to reach millions of fans.

“It saddens me that 55 years after the Voting Rights Act of 1965 was passed, there is a need for See Something Say Something. Yet, several months after the death of John Lewis, we are witnessing the past repeat itself. Most of us in America are dedicated to free, fair, and peaceful elections. While we still have execution issues with our elections, no American should feel physically threatened or intimidated when heading out to vote”, said Eric Cohen, Founder of Voting Rights Are Civil Rights.

Judy Klein, Co-Founder of the Black American Music Association says, " As we approach one of the most important elections in our lifetime, and fully realize it's implications to impact future generations, it is beyond imperative to do everything we can to ensure a safe and fair election for voters. SeeSay2020 brings us closer to that goal."  

See Say 2020 billboard in South Carolina
Reclaim Our Vote billboard promoting See Say 2020 in South Carolina

Monitoring tweets about voter suppression

SeeSay2020 has been enhanced since the midterms to also listen to tweets about voter suppression using Nexalogy, a social media monitoring platform. The system has been configured to track tweets that include key words and also helps identify influencers who can highlight voter suppression as it occurs. Relevant tweets are added to the SeeSay2020 system to provide a comprehensive, realtime dashboard of voter suppression and where it is taking place.

Schematic of how SeeSay2020 process reports of voter suppression to create realtime maps and alerts.
SeeSay2020 schematic

Takeaway : Use technology, volunteers, performers to fight back against voter suppression. Help promote SeeSay2020 and subscribe for realtime alerts of voter suppression in your area.


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