Ask America Van Assignment!


Santa Barbara's offshore drilling
Image by Way Out West News via Flickr


Stoked, Stoked, Stoked, I am!  Tomorrow, as an Associated Content Freelance Writer, I will be visiting the Ask America Van, part of the Yahoo! News social media friendly experiment to engage and inform Americans on Political Issues on an interactive platform.  The basis of Ask America is a website of layered information, where a literal spinning wheel of issues presents “tiles” of topics that act as onions to be peeled for information, with the capacity to be filtered both by State and Political Distinctions.  The innovative intelligence behind the Issues Wheel, of course, is that while you investigate the separate tiles of topics, every click made to further investigate ones original interest requires a yes or no answer to a clearly electorial based question of opinion.

The fashionable and intensely interactive display of rotating top contenders of concerning issues within the plethora of political catastrophes we face are presented for the user to investigate, while requiring your humble opinion at each turn.  What successfully occurs is the attainment of very helpful statistics for politicians to use in this and future campaign stradegy.  As the site simultaneously pulls information and statistics, with geographical insight no less, on hot button topics, it’s also providing a literal spinning wheel of information on the topic of your own choosing, pertinent to exactly who you are and where you live. Everyone wins, so to speak.  While I’m sure it’s not without it’s flaws and flops, the fundamental idea behind Ask America is an extraordinary machine.


Ask America Van


I’m quite excited to go and speak with other Floridians about the topics they are most concerned and invested in presently.  I’m not sure how I will successfully construct a 600 word piece that is up to my usual editing standards with less than a day to work with, but I’ll deal with that issue tomorrow evening and through the night until I have it submitted.  The pressure is on, and the adrenaline is surely flowing, as I fondly reminis my days of leading ‘Students For Wesley Clark‘ in the 2004 Primary Election in Texas and campaigning with GrassRoots in Los Angeles last year for the opposition of Proposition 8.  It’s been a little while since I’ve had some good old fashioned political involvement, true involvement, and as I stated earlier… I am stoked! 🙂

As for now, I’m off to read up on Alex Sink, Immigration and Offshore Drilling.  Happy Friday Everybody!  Hope you all have an awesome weekend.

Here are some “Highlight Reel” Links for Ask America, Yahoo! News, and other related topics.

Ask America: Yahoo! News

Ask America Official Blog

Columbia Journalism Review of Tiles, The Issues Wheel, and The Ask America Van (written by: Joel Meares)

Ask America Van Updates

Mike Byhoff, Yahoo! News Video Ninja

(*Brownie Points For This Guy Already* It’s very sweet that he says his one necessity on the road is the picture of his girlfriend!)

Sylvia Cochran touches on the vague and pliable definition of a recession.

3 thoughts on “Ask America Van Assignment!

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