Journalist Laura Moser may not have worked in politics before, but she didn't let that stop her from taking action in the chaos that descended post-election. Instead, she launched Daily Action. This text messaging service is intended to engage and compel progressive individuals to do what we can, on a daily basis, to hold the current administration accountable.
This is how it works: After you've signed up, you'll then receive a text message with a short call to action based on where you live. For example, something as simple as a 90-second phone call to a legislator –– and in the time it takes to wait for your latte, you've taken part in your Daily Action for the day.
Because let's face it: As tempting as it is to use social media as your political sounding board, it certainly does not a civilian activist make. But taking part in a collective daily effort to resist Trump's hateful agenda? That's definitely something we can get behind.
Livingly: You've essentially built a service that makes app-style activism attainable through quick, easy and important "Daily Action Alert" text messages. Can you walk us through how you started the Daily Action platform?
Laura Moser: I wish I could claim that I pioneered the platform itself, but it already existed. The company where my husband works, Revolution Messaging, already used this SMS system for their work with Move On and the Bernie Sanders campaign and many other progressive causes. I just asked them if I could use the platform for this crazy little idea I had, little expecting how quickly it would take off.
Do you feel your background as a journalist, and your husband's as a photographer for Obama, has affected or shaped your desire and ability to spearhead a movement like this?
Definitely. I was able to launch my organization with a story in Vogue, which is a great platform, thanks to my background as a journalist. I also have a lot of experience shaping ideas very quickly on deadline, so I felt up to the task of writing and posting these political statements all day long. My husband's political experience, as mentioned above, was mostly useful in providing me with a great technology platform for my idea.
Speaking for those who may not have much experience being politically active: What, in your opinion, is the next best action people can take, apart from making phone calls to our local legislators and congressional committee members?
Showing up in person. Find out where and when your elected representatives are holding town halls, and show up and ask them questions face to face. If they're not holding town halls, you need to ask their offices why –– and keep calling and calling until they put some dates on the calendar.
How can we keep moving forward in our efforts as a part of the Resistance to Donald Trump's America?
We just can't get worn out by the constant assaults on our liberties. Speaking for myself –– I am already exhausted. I want to run away and hide sometimes because none of the craziness ever seems to stop despite our best efforts, but then I remind myself that authoritarianism thrives when regular people like me stop thinking that our voices matter. We can't succumb to the exhaustion. We just have to remember that 2018 isn't as far away as it sometimes seems.
It's clear that you've filled a gap with the Daily Action app. What do you feel is the boldest action you've taken thus far?
[When Trump's immigration ban was enacted], we called Customs and Border Protection offices at airports all over the country to ask how many detainees they were holding. Obviously they couldn't answer, but we got under their skin, and [on February 1st] CBP issued a statement answering the questions thousands of people had been asking their officers all day. We might not [have been] able to overturn the illegal ban with phone calls, but we can certainly call attention to the injustices taking place.*
And finally, what's your next move?
Just trying to keep afloat right now! I didn't realize how quickly DA would become a more than full-time volunteer gig, but now I feel that we are making a real difference and know that I must keep going. I am trying to get some funding so I can hire people to help me –– we would like to be able to send targeted messages to participants in critical swing states eventually, but right now I feel accomplished if I can just get a timely, urgent Daily Action out every morning.
*Update: As of today's publication date, the travel ban is on hold, after two states challenged the President's executive order.
Want to get involved? Text the word “DAILY” to the number 228466 (or “A-C-T-I-O-N”) today. You can also sign up for Daily Action here.