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The Apps You All Need To Download, Now!

(Miku has nothing to do with these apps, but she’s a patriotic puppy and I needed a photo to grab your attention)

 

I had every intention of posting a makeup tutorial, but today is not the day. Come Wednesday I’ll get back to my scheduled posts, because I intend to maintain a sense of normalcy around here – but you guys know me by now, and I would feel very strange being so actively involved in my real life and not addressing it online. That being said, I am addressing this to all of my readers, no matter where you stand on the political spectrum (okay, mostly US based, although many international readers have also expressed their interest). Anyway. I’m here to tell you about Countable, an app and site that might prove helpful to those who are feeling overwhelmed or helpless and want to be more involved (p.s. This is NOT sponsored). I’ve tried many political apps over the years, and in my opinion, this is the most streamlined, all-in-one, user friendly and nonpartisan app I’ve found. Simply put: Countable makes it easier for citizens to stay informed and have their voices heard.

Countable presents short, easy to digest summaries of bills going through Congress, focusing on both upcoming and active legislation. In addition to their explanation, you’ll find arguments in favor of and against the bill, and users can weigh in with their own opinions in the respective comment sections. You can then take it a step further by calling, emailing, or sending a video message to your representatives to let them know where you stand. Truth be told, I usually don’t use the app or site to contact my reps (I call from my phone), but I love that there is the option. Don’t know who your representatives are? No problem. When you sign up and enter your information, Countable connects you with the correct representatives in House and Senate — and now that you have that list of representatives, you can click on their profile and see how they’re voting (past tense, of course).

I know I’ve said this before, but we passively rely on those who are supposed to represent us when we should be actively engaged. Voting is just one small act of civic engagement. Chances are, you and your representatives — whether in your party or not — will not have complete and total alignment in opinions. Be informed, get involved, stay involved, and make sure your voice is heard by your representatives.

And while we’re on the topic of staying informed, I’d also like to recommend Politifact (also available in app form) for quick fact checking and submitting fact-check suggestions. I‘ve seen it on both sides: we fall victim to clickbait headlines and quotes taken out of context; we are quick to share without reading the whole story, to trust what we hear and read on others’ feeds without fact checking. While we’re in a day and age where most of our communication is online, we should all be careful of how we gather and spread information. Facts are important, sources are important — do not lose sight of that. While we will not all agree on every issue, I urge you all to do your research, make an informed decision, and treat one another with respect. We owe each other that. Annnnd, back to our scheduled programming. 

 

 

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10 comments

  1. THANK YOU SO MUCH for speaking out and acknowledging what’s going on! Kudos to you for being REAL about the state of things! I downloaded Countable at a friend’s suggestion last week, and now I’ll check out Politifact too. THANK YOU!

  2. Way to go- I wish all bloggers would use their voice to speak out instead of pretending like nothing it going on. Your voice is power! Keep it up!

  3. Thank you so much for passing along this info! I was aware of Politifact but not Countable and I can’t wait to check it out. I really appreciate bloggers being open about their political opinions.

  4. Thank you for sharing these apps! I’m definitely going to check them out! I appreciate you speaking out for what you believe in, whether that be on your blog, twitter, etc. I hope you’ll keep it up! 🙂

  5. Good for you posting this Keiko. I strongly believe that everyone, including bloggers (maybe even especially bloggers?), should not be silent at this time. The situation is too dire to not say anything. I think you struck the tone of this just right too, and highlighting the technology which will help people to educate themselves with facts is so important. I’m in the UK and wish apps like that existed for us, it would be so useful.