There have been quite a few articles detailing the supremacy of the Obama campaign’s Narwhal over the Romney campaign’s Narwhal. (No, really. Quite a few.) So many, in fact, that back in November I wondered if the disparity was big enough to be considered a problem for democracy. That doesn’t appear to be the concern of the erstwhile Obama coders, but there’s definitely a kind of civil war brewing between the programmers and the politicians. The Verge explains:
But in the aftermath of the election, a stark divide has emerged between political operatives and the techies who worked side-by-side. At issue is the code created during the Obama for America (OFA) 2012 campaign: the digital architecture behind the campaign’s website, its system for collecting donations, its email operation, and its mobile app. When the campaign ended, these programmers wanted to put their work back into the coding community for other developers to study and improve upon. Politicians in the Democratic party felt otherwise, arguing that sharing the tech would give away a key advantage to the Republicans. Three months after the election, the data and software is still tightly controlled by the president and his campaign staff, with the fate of the code still largely undecided. It’s a choice the OFA developers warn could not only squander the digital advantage the Democrats now hold, but also severely impact their ability to recruit top tech talent in the future.
It really shows the extent to which neither party–the GOP or the Democrats–are really up-to-date with the concerns of the rising generation of technological natives. For a brief moment back in December, David Brooks even led a charge claiming that the GOP has a haven to open-minded intellectuals. The GOP slammed the door on that idea almost immediately, however. As the Maddow Blog reported, Derek Khanna (one of the folks Brooks called out by name as a future luminary) submitted a paper on intellectual property rights calling for reform. Almost immediately, however, the Republican Study Committee withdrew the report and then fired Khanna.
That kind of complete idiocy from the GOP means that the Democrats have the latitude to abuse their own techy base, and solidifies that no matter how lazy the Democrats might be about issues important to the Internet generations, they are still a better option than the stodgy, reactionary, and frequently corporatist GOP.
So, will Team Obama outsource Orca? I doubt it. Why should they?