Can I create an online petition and moderate who signs?
April 27, 2016 4:31 PM   Subscribe

Is it possible to create an online petition that isn't for the general public but is instead for a specific set of people to sign?

I've penned an open letter and gotten a few dozen colleagues to sign. Recently there has been a lot more interest in signing this letter and I'm wondering if for simplicity sake I should just post it as an online petition. The problem is, this isn't really intended for the general public - I'd really like to keep it within my profession as I feel that makes the message that much stronger. Is there a way to create an online petition so I could circulate a link for colleagues to follow and sign, yet maintain some element of control over who signs to keep it within my profession?
posted by thelaze to Computers & Internet (2 answers total)
The problem here is that the business model for most petition platforms is building a list - ie, they want as many people as possible to sign the petition, because then they have their emails, which they can monetize (sad but true). What about setting it up as a google form? You could have the petition language as the text at the top, and then use the fields to have people sign. The problem there is that you would then have to have some way to deliver those names to the intended target.

Another option is a cheap advocacy CRM like Nationbuilder. You could sign up for the cheapest version ($29/month) and then stop using it when you're done. The petition would look a lot nicer and you would be able to have it send the petition directly from the signers to the target if you want.

Neither of these has a simple way to restrict by occupation (that would be hard in any instance) but at least you don't have to worry about your petition being promoted to other audiences. With either, you could have occupation or employer be a require field, and have a note saying the petition is for people who work in this profession.
posted by lunasol at 6:07 PM on April 27, 2016

Project Steve is basically this. You kind of have to apply to say you want to sign, provide your credentials, and if you're a Steve with a PhD in an an appropriate field, they add your name.
posted by If only I had a penguin... at 7:30 PM on April 27, 2016

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