5 Calls debuts what may be the easiest way to call your reps yet

A growing number of political activist websites have popped up in recent days to help those opposed to the Trump administrations policies and agenda to take action. But a new one, 5 Calls, has just launched its simple online tool that makes the more cumbersome process of getting in touch with your representatives a lot easier than before.

The site, created by a team of volunteers, isnt very fancy, but its certainly efficient.

The idea is that if you have 5 minutes to spare, you can place 5 calls something thats far more effective in terms of influencing your representatives and getting your voice heard than emailing is said to be.

And, yes, thissite has an anti-Trump, left-leaning agenda, but its worth notingits creators haveopen sourced the code. While this was done largely because of the way the team operated during their free time, from different locations it placesthe code in the public domain. And thatmeans others including those on the opposing side of the political spectrum couldbuild their own version of 5 Calls, if they were motivated to keep such a site updated.

5 Calls also offersa good case study in terms of user interface and user experience.

A glance on the homepage shows you how many calls are needed per action item. Then, when you click on an item, the site offers the phone number(s), the reason why its important, and the script to use while on the call. Thesite is also personalizedto your location, if you enter your address or zip code.


When youre finished with the call, you click another button to register your call result (e.g. made contact, left voicemail, etc.). The site will track call results to help them understand the impact theyre having, and where to direct future efforts. However, no personal information about the sites users is being recorded.

Calls are marked off to-do list style, so you can keep track of what youve done, and the site will be updated daily, were told.

Since its launch last week, 5 Calls has seenover 20,000 phone calls placed, as of the time of writing, according to the homepage tracker. That number is growing quickly, as news of the site is beginning to spread.


5 calls is a volunteer effort from Nick ONeill, Rebecca Kaufman, Mike Monteiro, Stewart ScottCurran,Liam Campbell, Matt Jacobs, Krishnan Ananth, and others. Kaufman helped with pulling data and other issues, Scott-Curran did the logo, and Monteiro designed the site, while the rest worked on either the front end or backend code.

Were a group of like-minded volunteers, mostly friends who met in San Franciscoat some point in time, though more distributed around the U.S. now, explains ONeill. This is all side-project, working nights and weekends, he notes.

The idea came about after he and Kaufman spentthe last few weeks of the election working at a Clinton campaign field office. After the election, they felt they needed to do something.

We knew there weregoing to be a lot of upset citizens feeling like they didnt have an outlet for resisting the incoming administrations plans, ONeillsays. Rebecca [Kaufman] drew inspiration from the HRC call tool to think about how we could provide a more general purpose tool for people to get involved.

5 Calls is another example a growing trend where technologists are comingtogether to quickly code and launch new services aimed at encouraging political activism likeTrack Trump, Call To Action, and Swing Left, to namesome recent examples.


Given that much of thetech community leans left, its not surprising to see the rapid launchof so many new resources like this, and specifically those operating inthe progressive realm.

Asmore tools become available, the more likely theyll be adopted by todaysarmchair activists, whose political activism pre-election may have been limited to Facebook likes and retweets.

5 Calls is available on the desktop web and via a mobile-optimized website.

Read more: https://techcrunch.com/2017/01/25/5-calls-debuts-what-may-be-the-easiest-way-to-call-your-reps-yet/