I've spent 3 years idly about software engineering and how it can directly relate to changing the cultural climate.

Most political campaigns are interested in voter databases, front end work (websites), and email/reachout systems. Cybersecurity work is generally unwanted by campaigns.

I see a lot of GIS being used by local activists.

As a backend/SRE chap, it's hard in my head to connect my work with cultural change.

Curious what others think here.


FWIW in 2016 I volunteered and wired together an website promoting Clinton, roughly 1M visits. It left me with ashes in my mouth: it didn't do enough, I don't think it changed the conversation and my skills were nearly pointless after it launched.

I see websites qua websites as infowar tools. true or false, they exist to promote a point of view, it's marketing. Useful but really you don't need me for that - just a CC for a domain and a wordpress account.

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so I'm curious: for those who have executed campaigns with reasonable success in activist circles (and know a little about tech)- what would a backend software engineer do for you?

@pnathan this seems like a strange way to approach a problem 😅

@kai Yes, it is. I am, perhaps, a little strange. But I think it's probably more productive than just writing something and hoping it'll work.

Or, alternatively, struggling to do things which I'm simply not that interested in or skilled at.

@pnathan I'm joking.

I've pretty much spent my entire life trying to do things that I'm not very skilled at and it hasn't worked out very well.

@kai Oh, ok. I thought you were simply being blunt to someone who is fairly ignorant and naive about how effective politics work.

@pnathan nah, if anything, what you're doing is probably very sensible 🤷🏼‍♂️​
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