Did You Catch Us On Fox News?

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Brigade Co-Founder and President James Windon caught up with Fox News Channel’s Douglas Kennedy to talk about how we’re helping people speak out about issues that matter and connect with like-minded individuals ahead of the 2016 election. “Brigade makes it easy, fun and social to be political online,” Windon told Kennedy.

Millennials, in particular, can stand to benefit from Brigade. Kennedy noted that 50% of American young people don’t affiliate with the Democratic or Republican Party and less than 20% feel politically engaged. “This generation really wants to be able to talk about the issues, connect directly with each other and perhaps think about things differently,” said Stephan Nicoleau, a Brigade user interviewed for the story.

Watch the Fox News “Check It Out” segment on Brigade here.

 

Brigade Featured in Entrepreneur Magazine

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We’re thrilled to be featured in the the February 2016 issue of Entrepreneur magazine, which is on newsstands nationwide now. Here’s an excerpt of the article about our mission, vision and team:

“Most Americans agree that government is broken. But only a few brave entrepreneurs have tried to fix it — and their efforts rarely go well. Brigade’s experienced leaders think they can do better. And this election year, they’ll become an object lesson in taking on the greatest business challenges.”
You can download the tablet edition here; the online version of the story will be available soon. You can also subscribe to Entrepreneur here.

New Year, New Ways to Make Your Voice Heard

Brigade’s kicking off 2016 by making it easier to weigh in on daily news, discover interesting topics, declare what issues are most important to you and connect with friends and neighbors who share your passions.

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Here’s what’s new in our iOS and Android apps:

  • Get Your News Fix: Optimized home feed with a fun and easy way to weigh in on today’s headlines. Come back each day for five more!
  • Explore: A new way to discover featured issues, people you might want to support and trending petitions you may want to sign.
  • Enhanced Civic Profile: Updated profile to showcase the issues you care most about, alongside positions you’ve taken, reasons you’ve written and campaigns you support.

Learning As We Grow

These exciting updates, and others we’ll release in the coming months, benefited from insights we collected from our growing community of users. Ongoing efforts to better understand what people love about Brigade — and what they’d like us to improve — are helping inform our strategy in 2016, an important year for politics and civic engagement.

To that end, we recently got feedback on a range of issues from more than 1,000 people on Brigade. Here are a few highlights:

  • 80% of Brigade users polled said they planned to vote in the 2016 general election. For context, nationwide turnout in November 2012 – the last presidential election – was 53.7%.
  • 74% of Brigade users polled said they planned to vote in their state primaries. Primary voter turnout in 2012 slumped to a record low of 17.3% in the 41 states that held statewide races in both parties.
  • When asked what types of politics they found most compelling, more than 80% of our respondents said they were interested in national politics and around half said they were interested in local, state or international issues.
  • More than 60% said they were “extremely” or “very” interested in informing local and state officials about topics they care about.

Get the latest update in the App Store and Google Play Store and let us know what you think about Brigade!

 

Ceiling-Breakers in Politics & Tech Compare Notes

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* POSTPONED: NEW DATE FEB. 24*

Please join Brigade and IGNITE National for a special event on Wednesday, Feb. 24 at 6 p.m. PT: “Ceiling-Breakers in Politics & Tech Compare Notes.” Women leaders in politics and technology will engage in a thoughtful and spirited conversation about the two fields and assess how we as a nation can do better in 2016 and beyond.

Featured Speakers:

This program is produced by Brigade, a tech start-up working to tackle the problem of declining citizen power and engagement in our democracy, and IGNITE, a national non-profit building a movement to ignite political ambition among young women and create gender parity in political leadership.

For more details and to RSVP, click here.

Recap: Disrupting Politics As Usual

Our CEO Matt Mahan joined Dan Pfeiffer, former senior advisor to President Barack Obama; Code for America Executive Director Jennifer Pahlka; and moderator Shelly Kapoor Collins last week for a lively and timely discussion about how technology can make politics and government more efficient and responsive.

Here’s a video clip of the “Disrupting Politics As Usual” event sponsored by INFORUM, the Commonwealth Club of California’s young professionals division:

More video excerpts are available on the Commonwealth Club website and entire program is available on C-SPAN’s website.

You can listen to the entire event here:

Best Presidential Debate One-Liners of 2015

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Five months, eight debates, 26 candidates and a seemingly endless stream of one-liners. Here are some memorable quotes from Republican and Democratic presidential debates thus far, curated by the Brigade team. Click the links to join our community’s discussion about each zinger, add your own, and get ready for 10 more debates during the 2016 primary season.

What I am as a businessman is far greater than what I am as an entertainer.”
– 
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Donald is great at the one-liners, but he is a chaos candidate, and he would be a chaos president.”
– Jeb Bush Screen Shot 2015-12-21 at 2.43.07 PM

“The marijuana kids are smoking today is not the marijuana Jeb Bush smoked 40 years ago
.”
– 
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There are more words in the IRS code than there are in the Bible. And not one of them is as good.”
– 
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We need more welders and less philosophers.”
– 
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Every time we raise the minimum wage, the number of jobless people increases.”
– Ben Carson Screen Shot 2015-12-21 at 2.43.07 PM


“Donald Trump has made a name for himself… by trafficking in prejudice and paranoia
.”
– 
Hillary Clinton Screen Shot 2015-12-21 at 2.43.07 PM

The American people are sick and tired of hearing about your damn emails.”
– 
Bernie Sanders Screen Shot 2015-12-21 at 2.43.07 PM

Our symbol is the Statue of Liberty, it is not a barbed wire fence.”
– 
Martin O’Malley Screen Shot 2015-12-21 at 2.43.07 PM

Any other noteworthy one-liners? We’d love for you to share them, so tweet us @JoinBrigade!

Brigade’s Most Buzzworthy 2015

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Every day, people visit Brigade to share views on news and issues that matter and see where their friends and others stand. As 2015 comes to a close, we’re taking a look back at the most talked about topics on Brigade based on the volume of people weighing in on positions, which are short opinion statements written by our team or users like you.

We’ve shared some highlights below. Join the conversation by downloading our app for iOS or Android or signing up at brigade.com:

ic_reasons_15    Most Engaging Staff-Created Positions

  • Preservation of our environment is a moral obligation
  • Much more should be sacrificed to stop climate change
  • Providing health care to citizens saves the country money in the long run
  • Childhood obesity is a national problem
  • The war on drugs has been a costly failure
  • The government should pay all outstanding student loans
  • We don’t need to keep track of police killings in the U.S.
  • It’s wrong to put people in jail for minor traffic violations
  • We should shut down the government if Congress cannot decide on a budget
  • Republicans gaining control of the Senate will be good for America
  • The government needs more resources in order to stop corporate abuse
  • Donald Trump is wrong to identify immigration as one of America’s top problems

ic_reasons_15    Most Engaging User-Created Positions

  • Citizens should be automatically registered to vote when they turn 18
  • The federal government can’t solve our problems; only we can solve them
  • Women should have access to affordable birth control
  • Political corruption is an eminent threat to democracy in the United States
  • Employers shouldn’t be allowed to discriminate based on someone’s sexual orientation or gender identity
  • The Boy Scouts of America was right to end their ban on gay leaders
  • The United States should have a national holiday on Election Day to increase voting
  • Racism is still an issue in the U.S.
  • Scientists & other experts play a critically important role in our government. We should seek their counsel
  • Airlines should show the full cost of the ticket up front – including seat fees, baggage fees, etc
  • You shouldn’t be punished and taxed more heavily for working harder and making more money
  • Vaccination records should be publicly available information

ic_reasons_15    Most Controversial Positions

  • We should shut down the government if Congress cannot decide on a budget
  • Congress should shut down the government instead of passing a budget that adds to the debt
  • the Keystone XL Pipeline project should move forward immediately
  • the best policy is to get rid of all subsidy, and get government out of our lives – Ben Carson
  • Vending machines should be banned from schools
  • President Obama is making a mess of the world – Lindsey Graham
  • Comcast and Time Warner should be allowed to merge
  • All senior CIA officials should be fired
  • Donald Trump’s luxury lifestyle disqualifies him as a serious presidential candidate
  • Obamacare should be repealed
  • Democrats have the ultimate Super PAC. It’s called the mainstream media – Marco Rubio
  • Government should limit the size of sugary drinks
  • Increasing the minimum wage will kill jobs

ic_reasons_15    Most Shared Positions (across Facebook, Twitter, SMS, email)

  • There is too much plastic floating in our oceans
  • Vaccinations can cause autism
  • Congress spends taxpayer money inefficiently
  • Sport hunting should be illegal
  • All police officers should wear body cameras
  • We should reform our immigration system
  • Going to a good school guarantees a good job
  • High-speed trains can boost tourism and business
  • School lunches should be more nutritious
  • The Internet should remain open and free

The social platform we started rolling out in June is just the beginning and we’re gearing up for 2016. It’s going to be a big year for us, an exciting year for politics and an important opportunity for you to help shape the future of our democracy. We can’t wait to continue our journey with you. In the meantime, share your feedback at [email protected].