Cafe Witness

Friday, November 30, 2007

Chris Dodd Internal Campaign Email "Snafu"?


I don't know how I got on the Chris Dodd email list, but here I am, getting weekly updates from his campaign. Most of those updates are (understandably) requests for donations from his supporters -- sometimes blandly and obviously so.

However, none of them were accidentally transmitted internal emails from Campaign Manager Sheryl Cohen to fellow strategist Tim Tagaris.

Until today.

(Evidently, Ms. Cohen figured out how to email the WHOLE mailing list after all -- see below.)

Transcript of Email from Chris Dodd Campaign to ENTIRE Mailing List:

From: Sheryl Cohen [EMAIL]
Reply-to: EMAIL,
Date: Nov 30, 2007 12:36 PM


I made a few small changes to your email draft -- you'll see them below.

Would have sent to the entire list myself, but I could only figure out how to send this test.

I know you're concerned about sending another fundraising email, but we're only $40,000 short of hitting our November goal, and that money will help keep us on the air and talking about ending the war in Iraq and the Constitution. And honestly, our supporters online are so terrific and have come through for us every time.

Plus, with votes on the war and retroactive immunity coming up, our leadership will help keep the pressure on other presidentials to keep their word.

Ask people to give at this link so we can track the goal publicly.


Sheryl Cohen
Campaign Manager, Chris Dodd for President

On Nov 30, 2007, at 10:53 AM, Tim Tagaris wrote:

Chris Dodd for President

Dear Friend,

Think about it for a second. Do you truly know what you'll get from the other candidates if they win the nomination?

If you really want the answer to that question, don't ask a person where they are going -- ask them where they have been.

Why do some candidates spend as much time apologizing for a career full of bad votes as they do talking about how they'll remedy the fallout if elected?

Why can't we get the simplest of answers to the straight questions from others?

And why do some just flat out skip the tough votes?

From authoring the Family and Medical Leave Act to his often single-handed efforts to restore the Constitution, you know what to expect from a Dodd Administration.

We set a goal about a week and a half ago to raise $100,000 online and we'll need your help right now if we're going to meet it.

Please get us there by contributing $25 right now.

Thirty-four days.

If you feel strongly about our fight to end the war in Iraq, prevent war with Iran, and restore the Constitution, we need your support right now.

Our field operation is humming along and our current "Restoring the Constitution and Rule of Law tour" is drawing larger crowds than we've seen at any point in the campaign.

But we need your help to keep it going.

Thirty-four days.

Your contribution right now will ensure we have the resources necessary to continue the fight through January 3rd.

You've come through for us every time.

Not much time left.

Let's get it done.

Tim Tagaris
Chris Dodd for President


The Lesson Here?

Actually, two very important lessons can be learned from this conundrum:

1) If you're going to accidentally email thousands of people regarding internal political communications for a presidential candidate, make sure you don't say ANYTHING that could be used against you if it fell into the wrong hands. (Good job, Ms. Cohen!)

2) Please, please teach everyone on your staff how to use the email system.


*UPDATE* Immediately after posting this blog, it occurred to me that the Dodd campaign may have purposely "leaked" this email, knowing that the blogosphere would swarm to it.

At least, if they DIDN'T do it on purpose, that's how I'd spin it, anyway. (Notice how the email is actually entirely positive, and meant to draw attention to a campaign that's obviously not among the "major names" in the news these days?)

*UPDATE* All of which brings up a valid question: What's worse: gaming the social media system to make $40,000, or being legitimately incompetent?

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  • Do you think that this slip-up was intentional to generate publicity and attention for Chris Dodd? I mean no press is bad press. As this is a relatively harmless snafu.

    And you blogged it. Gets the people talking.

    By Blogger Norm, at 1:44 PM  

  • My thoughts too, Justin.

    In the MMO-IM niche, this 'trick' is over a year old. We've seen all variations...

    "I'm XYZ's wife, he's away shopping, and I took this chance to sneak into his email and sent this..."

    "I'm ABC's assistant. She's on holiday, and would have a fit if she knew I'm sending this, but..."

    "I'm QRS's pet DOG. He left his machine running, and has no idea I can type! Well, anyway..."

    and then it goes into a pitch - offering a time-sensitive discount, or last chance, or special offer.


    All success

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 1:52 PM  

  • Almost certainly done on purpose.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 7:28 PM  

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