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View Full Version : New Schiff for Senate Phone Banking contest




qwerty
08-02-2010, 05:02 AM
YouTube - New Schiff for Senate Phone Banking contest (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jj1xlGHdx-A)

Vote up in Reddit!

http://www.reddit.com/r/Libertarian/comments/cwd5x/new_schiff_for_senate_phone_banking_contest/

qwerty
08-02-2010, 06:04 AM
bump

iFollowPeterSchiff
08-03-2010, 06:44 PM
Just griping. <Feel free to ignore.>

I know this isn't about the prizes, but the future of our country, our well being, and freedom, but this contest is so unfair to me. (Yes, I've made phone calls and donated money.)

When I get an actual person to talk to me and they don't hang up, my typical conversation is 5-10 minutes. My longest was over an hour. I usually get them to support Peter in the end when this happens. But I don't have lots of time to make calls all day as I tend to either be working or asleep during calling hours. So there is no way I can rack up the number of calls needed to even enter the drawing.

Yet, I've spent over 1000 hours working on the iPhone/iPad app over the past several months (things you can do when everybody is asleep), and I can't even get the Schiff for Senate people to acknowledge it or call me back or Peter to say something short on YouTube about it.

And then be real about beating Sarah in number of phone calls. Competing with a teenage girl in a talking on the telephone competition... That's a teenage girl's home turf.

<end griping>

G-Wohl
08-03-2010, 07:15 PM
Yet, I've spent over 1000 hours working on the iPhone/iPad app over the past several months (things you can do when everybody is asleep), and I can't even get the Schiff for Senate people to acknowledge it or call me back or Peter to say something short on YouTube about it.

That's fucked up. I have your app on my iPad and think it's great. Peter should bring up this app in his next video blog, for sure.

Baptist
08-03-2010, 07:23 PM
To be honest, the people making 800+ calls, especially the dude in PA who two days in a row made 950 and Sarah who made 1050, those guys are doing one of two things.

- They are breaking the campaign's request to keep calls from 11am - 8:30pm, which in that case at least they're actually making real calls and talking to people. I myself have called as early as 10:45am and late as 9pm a few times. So if they are doing this, they might be waking people up but at least they are not screwing Schiff.

- They are hitting "Next Call" or "Smart Drop" as soon as the option opens up to them so that they can rack up the count. In other words when a voicemail comes up they are not waiting for the beep to hit Smart Drop but are hitting it right away which means people are only hearing half the message. And when a real person answers instead of actually talking to them, they are hitting Smart Drop or Next Call and moving along.

They HAVE to be doing one of these two. I really hope it's the former. There is no other way to rack up that many calls. If you don't believe me, then call non-stop all day the legit way. I called from 10:45am - 9pm and didn't come close to 800. I had two 10 minute conversations, one 15 minute conversation, and stopped phonebanking two or three times to pee. Didn't even stop to eat or anything.


But at least Peter offered the 50 calls a day thing so you can get in that raffle. 50 calls does not take long. Don't feel bad for them not noticing the app. I have communicated with the campaign a few times and could tell they are really busy and don't notice a lot that goes on.

iFollowPeterSchiff
08-03-2010, 07:53 PM
But at least Peter offered the 50 calls a day thing so you can get in that raffle. 50 calls does not take long. Don't feel bad for them not noticing the app. I have communicated with the campaign a few times and could tell they are really busy and don't notice a lot that goes on.

<More griping> :eek:

I won't/didn't even make the 50 call cutoff.

Yesterday, I worked a really long day, so I needed to do 100 today.

Today, I had a little bit of time which I did some calling. But I got a lot more pick ups than usual and I had some long conversations with multiple people. I think I only got through 40 calls in about an hour and a half of calling. (That crash today didn't help me time-wise either.)

As for the app, I do feel really bad about it. The most recent insult is that the new SchiffStorm website got mentioned and it was only up for a few days. While I totally respect and applaud the effort of those who made the website and am glad Peter is promoting it, I feel disrespected in some sense. It is only a single page website with links. It certainly did not take a 1000+ hours to make. (Apparently proof that the SchiffStorm people are much smarter and wiser than me.)

A lot of blood, sweat, and tears went into the app (not to mention the Apple taxes). I also spent 2 Apple DTS incidents on it only to reveal I found like 5 Apple bugs which they need to fix and I have to workaround. But worst of all, I really wanted to help the Schiff campaign and I feel like the effort was completely wasted. (I heard from a few users that it has really helped showing friends and family who Peter Schiff is because they can just whip out their phone and show them right there. I envisioned some volunteers on the ground in CT could apply this technique to voters they encounter.)

<end griping>

BDR
08-03-2010, 08:01 PM
To be honest, the people making 800+ calls, especially the dude in PA who two days in a row made 950 and Sarah who made 1050, those guys are doing one of two things.

- They are breaking the campaign's request to keep calls from 11am - 8:30pm, which in that case at least they're actually making real calls and talking to people. I myself have called as early as 10:45am and late as 9pm a few times. So if they are doing this, they might be waking people up but at least they are not screwing Schiff.

- They are hitting "Next Call" or "Smart Drop" as soon as the option opens up to them so that they can rack up the count. In other words when a voicemail comes up they are not waiting for the beep to hit Smart Drop but are hitting it right away which means people are only hearing half the message. And when a real person answers instead of actually talking to them, they are hitting Smart Drop or Next Call and moving along.

They HAVE to be doing one of these two. I really hope it's the former. There is no other way to rack up that many calls. If you don't believe me, then call non-stop all day the legit way. I called from 10:45am - 9pm and didn't come close to 800. I had two 10 minute conversations, one 15 minute conversation, and stopped phonebanking two or three times to pee. Didn't even stop to eat or anything.


But at least Peter offered the 50 calls a day thing so you can get in that raffle. 50 calls does not take long. Don't feel bad for them not noticing the app. I have communicated with the campaign a few times and could tell they are really busy and don't notice a lot that goes on.

Having used CallFire for other causes before, I can tell you that Schiff and his staffers have full access to the statistics for every volunteer. If they were using smart drop excessively or clicking through calls then it would be easy to detect, and (I hope) the campaign would recognize that.

jscoppe
08-03-2010, 08:17 PM
Hey app maker, this is the "schiffstorm.com people".

I can't imagine the effort that went into an app, and I don't have all the information I would need to make a proper assessment, but I probably would have guessed 1000+ hours was not going to pay off. You would have probably reached more people by just calling for those hours (though I realize the timing might not line up the same). It's a cost-benefit thing.

Yes, my page was simple. It took me a few hours over the weekend to make (I also had to register the domain and get a hosting account). That was my attempt to use my skill set to reach as many people as possible with the limited time I have. I have two jobs and a kid on the way, and I spend all my free time phone banking and making websites (I also made schiff-bomb.com), when I'm not building an office out of my storage room to make room for a nursery.

I'm not trying to brag, or pick on you, but a grass roots campaign like this needs everything it can get from every volunteer possible. I'm glad people are noticing the site, and I hope it inspires them to make mass calls on Sat-Sun. I also hope people get your app and it convinces voters. Please don't gripe. We're doing this for Schiff, for America, and for liberty.

messana
08-03-2010, 10:02 PM
Maybe Schiff will notice if the app is hosted on the Schiffstorm page.

jscoppe
08-03-2010, 10:08 PM
Lol, I would certainly ad info about the app if it would help.

Edit, I just noticed the link, and all the info there and the great screencaps, etc. I will get it up on schiffstorm as soon as I can.

Edit2: Done. Here is what I've got up on schiffstorm.com (http://www.schiffstorm.com) currently:

http://i.imgur.com/Qk8ve.png

It links to the app's info page: http://playcontrol.net/iFollowPeterSchiff/

I must say, this is the first I have seen of the app since I'm not an iPhone user, but it is truly a masterpiece. *Almost* makes me want to pay an arm and a leg for an iPhone and data service on my phone that I'd never use. ;)

Edit 3: if you go to schiffstorm, you will find I added a "FREE!" callout.

iFollowPeterSchiff
08-04-2010, 03:54 AM
<more late night rambling>
(Another late, long night for me…waiting for a long compile…)


Hey app maker, this is the "schiffstorm.com people".
I can't imagine the effort that went into an app, and I don't have all the information I would need to make a proper assessment, but I probably would have guessed 1000+ hours was not going to pay off.


First, I need to correct the number of hours. It's somewhere in the 200-400 ballpark. I can't do math any more. I'm working way too hard and not getting enough sleep. I did the math once (erroneously) and cited the result multiple times. My apologies to everybody. I'm rather embarrassed.

But you're still right. That's too many hours. I didn't intend it to take that long, but things were harder than I expected. I looked for apps on the store, and I found one set that all seemed to be paid for that originated from the same company. They were mostly just web views that pointed to places like YouTube and you had to use a standard web interface instead of a native iPhone UI. Kind of clumsy and those candidates weren't very good about using things like YouTube (unlike Peter). Worst of all, these apps follow the same generic template and didn't really take advantage of their candidate's unique strengths. So I wanted to build an app that took advantage and highlighted Peter's strengths and not some generic thing. I also wanted it to stand out because I was hoping it might also create a little buzz to get some media attention since main stream media visibility is one of his problems and there is a lot of Apple hype right now. I noticed that none of Peter's competitors have an app which would also give him an edge.

Unfortunately, I hit lots of technical problems on the road. For example, I originally built for iPhone/iPod touch and didn't have an iPad. So I relied on compatibility mode for the first releases to work for iPad. But as it turns out, my app exposed two serious bugs on iPad. First, there was a bug that prevented the YouTube videos from playing when you tapped the play button. This kind of renders my app useless, so I needed to fix this. So that was DTS incident 1. If I work around the problem that prevents the movie from playing, then I discovered there was an even more evil Apple bug where the video would play but it was completely messed up, and you could not escape or quit the movie without killing my app. This was DTS incident 2. So ironically, bug 1 saved users from an even worse bug 2. But then iPhone 4 came out and it also was affected by bug 1.

So basically, I had to work around bug 1, and completely redesign my app for native iPad support in order for it to work to deal with bug 2. It looks really great on iPad now (some say it is way better than the iPhone version), but it was a big undertaking, something I completely did not plan on.

Another problem was Apple's approval process. I submitted on the tail end of iPad and the ramp up before iPhone 4 so the approval process was longer than usual. My app took 3 weeks to get approved. I think part of the problem is that the app has politics and that made them nervous. So the release timing kind of sucked too because it came out around when everybody was panicked about getting enough signatures to get on the ballot.



You would have probably reached more people by just calling for those hours (though I realize the timing might not line up the same).


My hours don't map well to people awake in CT. And I did most of the work before the new phone bank system. I signed up as a volunteer during the old phone bank system and never got contacted by the Schiff campaign for a followup. (Same old story I get now I guess.) I was expecting some kind of automated response with password and site link with additional instructions. FYI, to this day I still don't get any generic email announcements from the campaign. I'm not sure if its because they aren't sending anything out or some how they've completely managed to ignore me, even through automation.

I'm an engineer. It's well established that geeks like me don't have social skills. (I'm actually surprised at how successful I've been to get people to vote for Peter over the phone, but I'm apparently really slow.) At the time I started, my new book was delayed into getting to market and I was having problems getting enough contracts to stay fully employed at the time. So I wanted to find a way to contribute. I thought this would be the way.

Nobody would be stupid or crazy enough to write an iPhone app for somebody who's a long shot to even make the Republican ballot (well, almost nobody). So this was a free gift to the campaign. My frustration is that it was not taken advantage of.

Somebody else on this forum considered writing a similar app for Android. At this point, I would warn them to not even bother.




Yes, my page was simple. It took me a few hours over the weekend to make (I also had to register the domain and get a hosting account). That was my attempt to use my skill set to reach as many people as possible with the limited time I have. I have two jobs and a kid on the way, and I spend all my free time phone banking and making websites (I also made schiff-bomb.com), when I'm not building an office out of my storage room to make room for a nursery.


I hope it didn't sound like I was disparaging your work. I think it's great you did this, you did a fantastic job, and people found it useful to get the word out. And your timing was impeccable. My gripe was merely that the Schiff campaign was fast enough to turn on a dime and utilize it, while after my months of prodding them, they still ignore the app. (That, and the fact that my skill-set/ability to contribute something to the campaign that they seem to care about seems to be nil and I can't even qualify for their drawing or T-shirt despite all the other effort I've put in.)



I'm not trying to brag, or pick on you, but a grass roots campaign like this needs everything it can get from every volunteer possible. I'm glad people are noticing the site, and I hope it inspires them to make mass calls on Sat-Sun. I also hope people get your app and it convinces voters. Please don't gripe. We're doing this for Schiff, for America, and for liberty.

As I said at the beginning, I know bigger things are at stake like liberty and economic prosperity, but I was venting my frustration and sadness. As I said, feel free to ignore me. I'm used to it by now.





Maybe Schiff will notice if the app is hosted on the Schiffstorm page.
Lol, I would certainly ad info about the app if it would help.

Edit2: Done. Here is what I've got up on schiffstorm.com (http://www.schiffstorm.com) currently:


Thank you so much for doing that. I wasn't going to ask since your site was specifically about phone banking. I'll shut up now before I change your mind. ;)



I must say, this is the first I have seen of the app since I'm not an iPhone user, but it is truly a masterpiece. *Almost* makes me want to pay an arm and a leg for an iPhone and data service on my phone that I'd never use. ;)


Thank you! That comment made my day! :D I really appreciate that.

FYI, it works on iPod touch too over Wi-Fi. No service/data plan needed. But I totally understand the cost factor. I actually don't even have a cell phone. I'm probably the only iPhone developer in the world without a cell phone. (And I use phones so infrequently, I know how to make free long distance calls using Google Voice and Gizmo 5 without a telephone. Another indication of why phone banking doesn't play to my strong suits.)



Edit 3: if you go to schiffstorm, you will find I added a "FREE!" callout.

Thanks so much again. Terrific job on the whole graphic design!

<end rambling>

Onward to another week of phone banking.