I wrote on Sunday about Radio Caroline (the origin of the music industry's term piracy) and its owner's foray into politics in 1970, where he is credited with helping turn the UK General Election.
In the US, this is harder (all those checks and balances) but still possible. In the next 3 months, all the representatives of the people will be in their home districts, campaigning, holding public meetings, trekking from one place to another to meet their constituents.
What if there was a 'smart mob' waiting for them at each one?
Local constituents concerned and informed about the CBDTPA, Coble/Berman, the DMCA and the rest.
Lets set up a tree of weblogs - a top-level campaign one, giving the overview and highlights, then state and regional ones for each election. Brainstorm and hone a set of questions to ask each representative, and publish their responses, and an endorsement/rejection. Get the meeting attendees to bring video cameras and tape recorders and post the Q&A sessions in video and audio too. Sign up flyposters and canvassers. If there isn't an endorsable candidate, come up with a write-in candidate instead.
Instead of arguing about whether programmers or lawyers are doing more, or the details of which licence you release your software under, sign up to the broad principles we all can agree on - that the CBDTPA and Coble-Berman bills are an attempt to overturn the constitution by narrow interests.
Are we likely to win any seats? Probably not. But at the end of it, every representative will be aware of a big constituency who don't want the entertainment industry to have veto rights over the constitution. The DMCA was passed unanimously. Coble-Berman mustn't be.
So, why am I telling you to do this instead of doing it myself? I am a resident alien, and not supposed to get involved in politics - taxation without representation is my lot. You citizens need to do this - they are YOUR representatives.
Go out there and remind them.
AOTC could be a starting point BlogTheVote2002USA