Reverse engineering targeted emails from 2012 Campaign

Posted to Statistics  |  Tags: , ,  |  Nathan Yau

After noticing the Obama campaign was sending variations of an email to voters, ProPublica identified six distinct types with certain demographics and showed the differences. It was called the Message Machine. Now ProPublica is taking it a step further, hoping to dissect every email from all 2012 campaigns.

Today, we are relaunching the Message Machine, and expanding it from handling just one mailing to handling every email from all of the campaigns in the 2012 election. It will seek a broad understanding in real time of the new and sophisticated ways modern campaigns are targeting voters.

It's a big puzzle, and to solve it, we need a big sample of political emails, and an understanding of who received them. That’s where you come in.

If you get campaign emails on any subject — donation, get-out-the-vote, volunteering, events, etc. — just forward them to [email protected] using your email program's standard forwarding feature. Nothing fancier than that needed.

Way cool. Although I bet there will be a lot of noise, especially from the smaller, less data-savvy campaigns.

2 Comments

Favorites

Jobs Charted by State and Salary

Jobs and pay can vary a lot depending on where you live, based on 2013 data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Here’s an interactive to look.

Interactive: When Do Americans Leave For Work?

We don’t all start our work days at the same time, despite what morning rush hour might have you think.

Reviving the Statistical Atlas of the United States with New Data

Due to budget cuts, there is no plan for an updated atlas. So I recreated the original 1870 Atlas using today’s publicly available data.

Most popular porn searches, by state

We’ve seen that we can learn from what people search for, through the eyes of Google suggestions: state stereotypes, national …