Congresswoman Pingree’s campaign website wants to know where you stand on intervention

Congresswoman Pingree ['s campaign website] wants your email address, zip code, and opinion [I guess, as the comments field is the only part of the form that isn't actually required] on this overwhelmingly unpopular intervention.

Perhaps I am being too hard on the Congresswoman? Maybe this is actually an earnest attempt to hear from more voices, as glaringly unscientific a process as this might be? Nah. While I generally agree with Rep. Pingree’s positions, this ploy is silly and disingenuous, as she has a feedback page on her Congressional website for such solicitations of opinion.

Come on now, Congresswoman Pingree’s office. You can do better than this.

Anyway, in TOTALLY unrelated but hilarious and amazing news, Russell Brand was kicked out of GQ Awards for pointing out that Hugo Boss made Nazi uniforms. The Daily Mail reports:

Shortly afterwards, Brand was kicked out by the magazine’s editor, Dylan Jones. According to the comedian’s Twitter feed, the two men exchanged angry words, with Jones saying, ‘What you did was very offensive to Hugo Boss.’ Brand replied, ‘What Hugo Boss did was very offensive to the Jews.’

GQ’s response reminds of how celebrities are now getting pissy with celebrity press for, you know, asking questions about how seemingly insane some of the practices of the Church of Scientology appear to be. Consider this news the aperitif to the politics / data-grab-disguised-as-innocent-poll post above.

NOTE: This original post questioned whether or not the aforementioned poll and related email violated the CAN-SPAM Act of 2003. It turns out there a specific exemption in Can-SPAM for “messages about candidates for public office” and so the act only applies to “commercial” messages.

It is worth noting that there are basic privacy guidelines called the Fair Information Practice Principles: Framework for Privacy Policy [FIPPS] that, for example, DHS has adopted. Contained within is plenty of language like “should be transparent and provide notice to the individual regarding its collection, use, dissemination, and maintenance of personally identifiable information.” The guidelines are not legally binding, but they’re generally accepted in many government organizations and big businesses.

Many thanks to the great and informative Sam Pfeifle for pointing me in the right direction regarding the aforementioned guidelines and acts.

Alex Steed

About Alex Steed

Alex Steed has written about and engaged in politics since he was an insufferable teenager. He has run for the Statehouse and produced a successful web series. He now runs a content firm called Knack Factory with two guys who are a lot more talented than himself.