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Wednesday, November 12, 2008

cross-pollinating pc & liberal membership lists.

Last week, I received an email from a friend asking me if he knew how an Alberta Liberal leadership candidate could have got his email address. As a former PC supporter, my friend had never held a Liberal membership and was understandably a little confused when he found himself on Dave Taylor's email list.

It seems that my friend isn't the only one in this situation
.

16 comments:

Anonymous said...

Me too! jeez I am interested in how he got my email...

SD said...

Interesting... you can add me to that list as well. I'm also a little bit confused as to how he would have gotten my personal email.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for posting this, Dave. It's great to see that some political writers like yourself can put aside partisan loyalties and call a spade a spade. This kind of stuff keeps me coming back.

jp said...

Taylor's team likely got it from a past-PC supporter now supporting Taylor's bid. These lists aren't too hard to get your hands on. I remember an associate talking about how freely the Edmonton-Ellerslie lists were floating around his constituency. Thousands of names, virtually no security.

Not surprising.

Anonymous said...

Don't they give out PC membership lists when you fill up with 30L or more of gas at ESSO?

Honestly, is it surprising the Taylor camp got one?

Anonymous said...

The issue isn't that these lists are easy to get ahold of... that's true of almost every political party (or at least those using their lists to full effect).

The problem is with Dave Taylor's team using these lists. They should know better than to use information that was not their property. They are abusing peoples trust and all that will come from it is a decline in membership for all of the political parties.

A declining PC membership is not nearly as critical as a declining Liberal membership base would be, given their respective size differences. So all Dave Taylor has done is hurt the Liberal party of Alberta. I somehow doubt this will be the last time he does that.

Anonymous said...

I actually got a hardcopy letter mailed to me at work, as did a number of my colleagues. There would be no way they could get that address unless they shotgunned mail to the employee list.

I did get a free stamp out of it, from the return letter.

Werner Patels said...

I think the likeliest explanation is this:

More and more Tories are becoming frustrated with Stelmach, and so one PC member may have forwarded some contact info to Taylor to see if he can find some supporters from among the disgruntled Tories.

roblaw said...

I agree with the sentiment expressed in the blog - and I also have to give props to you commenting on it. I think more of us (me included) need to look beyond partisan commentary.

Using a list that you do not have a right to is just wrong. Period.

Anonymous said...

"Don't they give out PC membership lists when you fill up with 30L or more of gas at ESSO?"

No, you get it when you use your PC membership to get a discount at the Liqour Depot.

Lou said...

I'm feeling left out that I didn't get an email...

But seriously, I don't support the Liberals or Dave Tayor, but why shouldn't he target his mailings to people who have shown an interest in Alberta politics? That's just good campaign management.

We're not talking about reading someone's private health or financial records here. Taylor is trying to encourage political engagement and help his campaign. He's doing what politicians do. Might as well blame the grass for being green.

roblaw said...

Lou - well, to begin with, it's probably illegal. When you give any personal information to a body, you have a right to expect that they will not give that information to someone you don't know and haven't authorized to have that information.

I know in this ago of endless spam in our email boxes we get used to assaults from unkown emailers - but, fundamentally, suppose you sign up for a PC or Liberal membership - and some member gives your address to a porn outfit - so they start sending you personally addressed letters to your home.

Lots of people do crack cocain too Lou, doesn't make it right.

chester j said...

I gotta go with Lou on this one.

Isn't growing the party and persuading red torys to join the Liberals what everybody has been on about for months now?

Seems like Taylors team is actually doing it.

kyle said...

It shouldn't be such a shock that email addresses are being used this way. it was only a matter of time before this happened. Nothing is private, phone numbers or email.

Really? said...

Slow news day?

rc said...

Party membership list shenanigans aren't new in Alberta politics, but Dave Taylor isn't in very good company.

When I saw this article I remembered, last year, reading about how the wingnuts in the stillborn "Wildrose Party" tried to use an old Alberta Alliance membership list to drum up signatures for their failed registration application; Guess they forgot that there's only so many nuts you can shake out of that particular tree....