tassosss: (awesomecakes)
[personal profile] tassosss posting in [community profile] thisfinecrew
On Wednesday, [personal profile] executrix  posted a link to Resistbot. I finally got around to trying it out today and I am here to now convert the rest of you into using it.

Resistbot is my new favorite thing.


Story time: The first week after Inauguration it wasn't hard to get over my fear of phones and call my representatives in Congress. It sucked but I did it. Then three things conspired to make me pretty much stop. 1) I live in a very vocal blue state. My senators and reps are already doing what I want them to do, so the urgency tapered as 2) real life reasserted itself and things simmered down since I can't live in crisis mode, and 3) when I did call, there were so many calls that I wasn't getting through anymore and it all felt pointless.

I'm going to pause here and recommend you read What Calling Congress Achieves (The New Yorker) that [personal profile] snickfic  posted in today's linkspam. It reinvigorated my urge to contact Congress People because it DOES matter. It matters that we do it collectively in large numbers over the long haul.

Back to Resistbot. Here's what it is. You text "resist" to their number 50409 and the bot answers. I got to grin and imagine I was talking to a droid in Star Wars.

The bot asks for your name and zipcode. It finds your senators (it will add your representative if you use it again). Then it asks what you want to tell them. Here's where I messed up this time around: I talked to the bot instead of my senators. Don't do that. What you text to the bot is what's going to be put in the fax addressed to them, so you should address your representatives directly.

I gotta say, it was really easy to do, and I really liked being able to text what I wanted to say. At this point in my life, texting is one of my major forms of communication, so it wasn't hard to come up with something. I think it's good because it also forces you to be short. Make one point and then send.

The bot formats it into a letter, which it screenshots for you, and then faxes to the appropriate offices. All told it took about five minutes.


To sum up:

You basically get to text Congress without looking up their contact info
The resistbot sends it to them as a faxed letter
You don't have to call over and over again to get through jammed lines or full inboxes
You don't have to talk to a person or wait for open office hours




Date: 2017-03-18 11:16 pm (UTC)
kyrielle: A photo of kyrielle, in profile, turned slightly toward the viewer (Default)
From: [personal profile] kyrielle
I am kind of loving ResistBot. :)

Date: 2017-03-18 11:59 pm (UTC)
st_aurafina: Rainbow DNA (Default)
From: [personal profile] st_aurafina
That is amazing and brilliant!

Date: 2017-03-19 12:58 am (UTC)
clare_dragonfly: woman with green feathery wings, text: stories last longer: but only by becoming only stories (Default)
From: [personal profile] clare_dragonfly
Oh, that's really cool! Thanks for the explanation!

Date: 2017-03-19 12:21 pm (UTC)
cafeshree: woman sitting on chair reading a book (Default)
From: [personal profile] cafeshree
Thanks for this! I'm going to try it.

edited to add, just tried it and it was amazingly easy!
Will use it regularly.
Edited Date: 2017-03-19 12:30 pm (UTC)

Date: 2017-03-20 07:28 pm (UTC)
redbird: closeup of me drinking tea (Default)
From: [personal profile] redbird
I just tried this for the first time: the bot introduced itself, asked what name I wanted to use to sign my letters, and then said "So many people are writing to Congress that I can't keep up. My servers are on fire...I'll be back soon." It then gave addresses for either donations or to volunteer.

Date: 2017-03-24 11:12 pm (UTC)
redbird: closeup of me drinking tea (Default)
From: [personal profile] redbird
I tried again an hour ago, and got through with no trouble. I am operating on the theory that the bot/faxes may be less effective than calling my senators, but it's almost certainly more effective than not calling them, and is easier both emotionally and because I can send the messages at any time. (The bot said that next time I used it, it would send messages to both of them and my member of Congress.)

Date: 2017-03-25 10:50 am (UTC)
redbird: closeup of me drinking tea (Default)
From: [personal profile] redbird
No apology needed; I spent a chunk of this week away from my computer and dealing with the aftereffects of a sleepless night. (I do look at email through the phone, intermittently, but do almost no Web browsing that way.)

Nor would this thread have been urgent enough for that to be a problem even if I'm home. (Some aspects of our activism can be, yes—though I wrote myself a medical excuse note for Wednesday-Friday this week, and am prioritizing a family religious/social event today—but certainly not all of them.)

Date: 2017-03-21 01:08 pm (UTC)
From: [personal profile] indywind
Has anybody with a non-smart phone used it? I have an old text-and-voice-only phone, am wondering how the screenshot to review my fax would work with my hardware limitations, whether it would crash at that point or something.

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