Jason Putorti

VP of Design, Brigade

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What’s your mission?

The last few months have been quite a ride for me.

I’ll save the lessons learned (and there are many) for a later date, but the question I’ve been asked the most since January is, “how long are you staying at Causes?”

This question probably has something to do with the last time I was part of an acquisition, but a lot is different this time around.

This time, I didn’t find out about the acquisition of Votizen by reading TechCrunch in the morning. This was a deliberate decision I had a large role in, along with my co-founder and the rest of the company. Everyone had a say, and I’m proud that nearly all of us made the decision to go along.

Second, in 2007 I joined Mint as lead designer because I saw an amazing opportunity. I saw a compelling value proposition that most startups were missing back then (and still are). There was an opportunity to build an amazing brand, and I could learn...

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Moneyball for Votes

Michael Lewis in his 2003 book Moneyball wrote in-part about how baseball has become an unfair game controlled by the big-spending teams. The same can be said of our political system, and the problem is only getting worse.

Political Advertising

Article I of the Constitution contains the following:

After the first enumeration required by the first article of the Constitution, there shall be one Representative for every thirty thousand, until the number shall amount to one hundred, after which the proportion shall be so regulated by Congress, that there shall be not less than one hundred Representatives, nor less than one Representative for every forty thousand persons, until the number of Representatives shall amount to two hundred; after which the proportion shall be so regulated by Congress, that there shall not be less than two hundred Representatives, nor more than one Representative for every fifty...

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The Last Mafia

The Paypal Mafia

Some years ago, Fortune magazine coined the term “Paypal Mafia” for the former executive team at Paypal that went on to shape Silicon Valley over this past decade, from founding companies of their own to making investments, and advising the next generation.

Ever since, people have been trying to label the next mafia. The Facebook mafia is mentioned quite a bit as we approach their IPO, and even the Twitter mafia has a singular fan out there.

Here’s a prediction: the Paypal mafia is the last mafia. I don’t believe the level of talent and intellectual horsepower that came together to create Paypal will happen again, especially in today’s climate. There’s too many startups, too much greed, too much ego. It’s going to take a big and very special vision to bring together anything close to that kind of team again, and even then it’s going to be a struggle.

Even the Facebook executives, as...

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Votizen: Past, Present, and Future

Votizen Stickers

People often ask me to explain Votizen, and I always enjoy watching someone’s face light up when I share our vision for the future. However, until now, I’ve never published where we’ve been, what we’re building and where we’re headed. With over a million voters now reachable through our platform, it’s time to fix that.

March 2011: Get your voting history, and use it to certify messages to Congress

We flipped the switch on Votizen in March of 2011. At that time, it was a product where registered voters could sign up, retrieve their voting record and history, and write messages to Congress. Think of it as a certified letter, although instead of certifying the contents with the post office, you could certify that you were a real constituent of the official you were writing— and not just any constituent, but one with the power to vote him or her in or out of office every election year.

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