There’s no worldwide database of locally elected officials. What if we tried to fix this by creating an adventure to scrape the world in 80 days?
The idea is a mixture between Gumball3000, 500 Startups, and Code for America. We would create teams for each country that people could join to gather (scrape) that country’s data before the 80 day timer is up. Motorcycle, bike or ride a truck across the country, whatever needs to be done to scrape the data about local governance. Teams upload the data to the site and get points for speed, difficulty, and size. Pictures, videos, and stories add more points too. Winning teams go down in history as having participated in a global internet day of action, similar to the crowdsourced documentary Life in a Day, the International Day of Peace,or 350.org’s global day of action “Moving Planet”, Twestival, or any other of a number of synchronous global events.
Sponsors could include Redbull, Virgin, Tom’s Shoes and other companies that are known for their adventurous and exciting spirit but also want to do some sort of social good in the world. Companies that are trying to re-imagine Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) but don’t exactly know what they could devote their time to can use this as a way of helping their own business and their bottom-line by reducing corruption through increasing transparency. It would also help them to join the other organizations who are forward thinking and have a good use their skills anyway
The time limit – 80 days – helps to make it exciting and therefore encourage participation and efficiency. Those two and a half months allow us to have media moments that capture the imagination of people all over the world. With belief in institutions being at an all-time low, a positive example of people power ushering in a new era of transparency in government will be much appreciated.
The data is collected into an editable wiki, controlled by the winning teams. Once imaginations are captured and the entire globe is covered, there will be an energy to make sure that the data remains kept up to date. can gather all the data the deathly go out of it’s going to get out of date pretty quickly it is that once we have the reputation people will step up to the plate and want to contribute an update to fix the data will occur on Curtis through rewards and other incentives from the community
I’ve written about this problem before. The question is what kinds of creative strategies can be employed to tackle this immense issue in a way that is timely and cost effective. I believe it’s out of the box thinking that will make democracy fun and engaging, rather than the tedious election-based burden that it’s seen as today. This is crucial if we’re going to continue to rely on democracy as a fundamental tool to human progress. Now that the internet has revolutionized how humans can interact, let’s push the limits of what kind of impact it can have on democracy worldwide and in each and every one of our lives.