Huffington Post encourages you to spy on your “friends”

Picture%207.pngHuff Po’s “Fund Race 2008” reveals personal political contributions and addresses of U.S. citizens.

The Huffington Post is urging site visitors to check out it’s Fund Race 2008 feature with headlines touting you can find out the truth about your friends and saying the tool “makes it easy to search by name or address to see which presidential candidates your friends, family, co-workers, and neighbors are contributing to.”

All snark aside, it’s actually an interesting, if stalkerish, way to see the political breakdown of individual donations Presidential candidates in your neighborhood. The site can be searched by address, name, occupation, and employer. A quick search of my zipcode listed a number of celebrities and their home addresses. Fortunately for their privacy, many list either their work or manager’s addresses instead of their own. But for others, their privacy could be blown.

One cool part of the site is its integration with Google maps to give a visual representation of the political makeup in different neighborhoods, city, or states. The screengrab here comes from part of the results for a search of Los Angeles – blue for addresses listed for donations to Democratic candidates, red for Republicans. If you move in close you can click on individuals dots to find the name and address of the constituent, along with who they gave to and how much. Hollywood to Santa Monica is largely blue, and it gets pretty red down in Orange County.

If anyone gives it a spin, please a comment with any interesting results…

4 Replies to “Huffington Post encourages you to spy on your “friends””

  1. I saw this on CNN Thursday night when I was in the airport in Boston. I was thinking I needed to check this out when I got home and forgot about it.

    It doesn’t have me in it at all, which is kind of strange. I know it’s not super up-to-date, but it’s missing contributions I made many months ago. When I think about it, this is probably a good thing because I’d rather not have people knowing how much I give.

  2. It is neither scary nor new, this mapping of who contributes what (above $200.00, which is a fact that was not mentioned in and is rather pertinent) to which party and all that.

    Some years ago, the New York Observer had a feature about which buildings on the Upper East and West Sides were blue, and which were red, owing to the tenants considerable contributions.

    It is all public information, as any contribution above $200.00 must be made public. It is merely easier to glean the information than the way it usta be, which meant a day of dusting off ledgers at the respective Hall of Records.
    http://www.cs.indiana.edu/~markane/i590/contributors.html

  3. No offense Markland, but you are the king of tabloid headlines.

    Huffington Post isn’t “revealing” anything. They’re reprinting publicly accessible information published by the FEC. It would be far more honest to say “Federal government reveals personal political contributions and addresses of U.S. citizens.”

  4. No offense taken. My headline is actually commentary on the way they’ve been schlepping their interface to access the info.

    Yes, it is info already available widely, but Huff Po’s map interface is a unique addition.

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