Ice Breakers, Team Building Exercises, Face Time Tools

My Favorite Face Time Tool: Strike A Conversation With A Stranger

"Hi, how is it going? Have your heard of Barack Obama? Do you like him? Why? Why not?"

"Do you follow his campaign much? Have you been to an Obama event? Would you like to? It is so easy to find one at his website."

The goal is to send that person to Let's not pretend that the internet was never invented, let's face the fact that 2008 is an internet powered election. Not everyone is online, but many who vote are.

You give them a small card that has on it. Or you get their email address and email them later.

You can strike up a conversation in all sorts of public places.

Over 250,000 people have donated to Obama so far. We want that figure to have hit two million before the Iowa caucuses. And his website will play a key role to that effect, even if not everyone will donate online.

Yes, There Is A Hierarchy: Homework Is Online, Action Is Offline

Your Neighborhood

There is a group in Kensington where I live. They have a gathering on July 19 in a few days. It is important to reach out to and get to know other Obama supporters in geographic proximity to you. You find out others near you through the Obama website. If you don't find a group, launch one. It is easy to do. New members will join you at the site without much effort on your part.

The Hard Core Crowd

Some of them might be in your immediate neighborhood, many will not be. For both types ice breakers and team building exercises will come handy.

Not everyone is trying to become close friends with everyone else. And that is okay. If you just want to do the volunteer work, work the phones, what have you, that is okay. In many cases, people who show up might be interested in getting to know the key people, but not everyone else who shows up, and that is okay too.


No need to learn names too hard, no need to exchange business cards. Most hard core types are on Facebook, and they are each other's friends. So you can meet people at events, and then later add them as a friend at Facebook. You get the basic info on them. You learn names.

All Said And Done: Face Time Still Is At The Core

I think it would help to popularize some ice breakers and team building exercises across the campaign. We will need the chemistry down the line.

Icebreakers, Warmups, Energerizers, & Deinhibitizers: Activities ... 2 Truths & a Lie People write down two truths about themselves and a lie. Then introduce the three "facts" to the rest of the group who tries to guess which one is a lie. ........................ Fear in a Hat Group members write personal fears anonymously on pieces of paper which are collected. Then each person randomly selects and reads someone else's fear to the group and explains how the person might feel. Fosters interpersonal empathy. ...... Have You Ever? Active, fun group activity to explore and celebrate the rich diversity of people's past experiences. Works well with large groups. ........... Screamer In a circle, people look at ground, then on "heads up" look into someone else's eyes. If 2 people are looking at each other, they scream and are both out. Continue to see who is last - hilarious. ........ Standup Meeting Remove all the chairs in the meeting room, and hold the meeting standing up. It will make the meeting shorter. ..... Celebrate Success When the group has something to celebrate (open new account, finish project on/ahead of time, promotions, etc.) celebrate it in the meeting with sparkling water served in champagne glasses. If appropriate, use champagne! ....... The Funniest Thing Ask group members to write down the funniest thing that happened to them or in their department since the last meeting. Put the responses in a bowl. Periodically during the meeting, draw them out and invite the group to guess who wrote each story. The "authors" can embellish if time allows. Variation: skip the writing and just share the stories at the beginning of the meeting or during. ...... Facilitate This! Take turns being the meeting facilitator.
Ice Breakers
Meeting Ice Breakers: 26 Ways to Make Them More Fun and Productive ...

Team Building Activities that encourage people to work together as ...
Team Building Exercises and Icebreakers
Team Building - A Complete Guide and Online Resources

In The News

Internet Music Video Pits 'Giuliani Girl' Against 'Obama Girl' FOX News
Obama: Shift Troops to Fight al-Qaida
Washington Post, United States
Obama disagrees with rivals on narrowing presidential field Waterloo Cedar Falls Courier "My attitude is the more the merrier," Obama said in an interview. "I don't know how you'd draw the line to say some can participate and some can't, particularly when you know historically, for example, Bill Clinton was at 2 percent in the polls in some of these early contests." .... Obama also suggested dispensing with brief answers as a way to bring more substance to debates. .... "I'd love to see a change in format where there's a (fuller) debate, instead of a succession of 60-second sound bites." .... In May, Grassley criticized Obama for not acting senatorial after he directly challenged Grassley to change his vote on the issue. ..... many voters, such as Charlene Ortner of Independence, are drawn to Obama because of his message of unity and optimism.
“Obama Will Totally Fuck Giuliani”, Says OG Queerty, NY
Obama Fails the Marriage Test
Men's News Daily, CA Barack pointed out that thirty students have been killed in Chicago this year -- more than the number of Illinois servicemen killed in Iraq. ..... recognizing the importance of marriage is actually a progressive idea
Candidates' Campaign Efforts Lag In Mobile Tech Arena, Analyst Says InformationWeek, NY Obama leads the pack among presidential candidates using mobile communications technology, which seems to be the most popular communications technology among young people ...... Obama grabbed a branded short code (62262) for text messaging that spells his last name, while Hillary Clinton and John Edwards have registered codes that don't relate to anything recognizable about them ..... Obama also gets points for a short keyword selection ("Go"), while Clinton and Edwards use longer words ("Join" and "Today.") Obama offers a mobile icon high on his Web page, ringtones, wallpaper, and an explanation that standard rates apply to text messages, while Clinton and Edwards offer less visibility and content for mobile features.
Obama rips AG, White House New York Daily News, NY
Dems Vie for Vet Vote in New Playing Field
New York Times, United States
Who would and wouldn't vote for Obama and why
Houston Chronicle, United States
Barack Obama Cites Genarlow Wilson Case in Response to Scooter ...
Black community eyes historic voting influence
Newsday, NY Dovie Goodwin feels something stirring in the black community, feels it more strongly than at any other time in her 99 years of life. ...... the most viable black presidential contender ever. .... White candidates who are making a serious play for black votes, a revised primary calendar that gives new weight to heavily black regions of the country and a recent Supreme Court decision that could re-mobilize the black community against segregation ...... "The feeling right now is that this is it, that it's now or never," said Julian Bond, chairman of the NAACP. ...... "I do think there's a feeling of possibility," said Bond, who was a founder of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee while at Morehouse College in 1960 and later was active in voter registration campaigns throughout the South.
Obama's 'Anyone But Hillary' Strategy Yahoo! News a sign that read "Anybody but Hillary Even You." ..... a 15-point spread separating Hillary Clinton from Obama .... In a June 4 Washington Post/ABC News poll, asked to name which candidate was the strongest leader, 50% said Clinton, 26% said Obama; asked who would best handle a major crisis, 47% said Clinton, 24% Obama; and, finally, asked who had the best experience to be president, 66% said Clinton, while just 9% said Obama. No matter which party one is talking about, those three criteria - strength, good judgment and experience - are how Americans choose presidents. ...... It's in the fundraising race where Obama is truly complicating Clinton's coronation. ...... "Anyone But Hillary" appeals to the two sets of voters Obama most needs to capture, the far left and the more moderate independents, who, with the implosion of the GOP, are steadily moving toward the Democratic Party ..... among self-identified Democrats, Clinton trounces Obama 42% to 17%. But among Democratic-leaning independents, Obama leads Clinton 29% to 23%. ..... It might not seem possible for a candidate to appeal to both the far left and moderate independents at the same time, but Obama is uniquely positioned to do just this. ...... a break with the Bush-Clinton-Bush-Clinton dynastic succession. ..... Obama was never going to get through this campaign squeaky-clean.
Campaigns trying to turn voter text messages into votes PopMatters, IL Dean alumni are “scattered across a whole host of campaigns that are determined to outwit each other on the Internet or mobile or whatever the platform is,” Trippi said. He suggested that the presence of former Dean staffers in the Democratic campaigns is one of the reasons that the Republican frontrunners lag behind the Democrats when it comes to use of technology. ..... “Really aggressive competition is creating a much bigger grass-roots movement on the Democratic side” ..... “It’s not really what comes from the campaign that matters anymore,” he said, citing YouTube videos that were passed from friend to friend, or the possible power of receiving multiple messages from friends urging attendance at a political rally. ...... younger people are most likely to use their cell phones in innovative ways. ..... 65 percent of cell phone users ages 18 to 25 used text messaging, that number dropped to 37 percent for ages 30 to 49. The same study found that 54 percent of English-speaking Hispanics used text messaging, while 42 percent of black and 31 percent of white cell phone users did. Those in the youngest age group were also the most likely - at 85 percent - to change their ring tones or cell phone background.

Clinton Backer’s Ties to Powerful Cut Both Ways New York Times Mr. Gupta, an Indian-American entrepreneur who has spent much of his professional life cultivating close ties to politicians .... contributing nearly $1 million to the Clintons and other candidates from the 1980s on. ..... Mr. Gupta, in turn, skipped a Clinton fund-raiser he helped put together last month in New York, and now says he is no longer involved in the campaign. ...... “With all this publicity,” he said, “to be frank with you, it just isn’t worth it.” ..... arrived in Nebraska from India in 1967 .... he found himself sleeping in the Clinton White House, vacationing with the former president and appointing the Democratic chairman, Terry McAuliffe, to the board of one of his companies. He gave consulting contracts worth $3 million to Mr. Clinton, and recently hired the son of Speaker Nancy Pelosi. ......... a hobby that enhanced his profile back in India and gave him and his family a thrill, while secondarily aiding his businesses ...... The Democrats paid infoUSA $5 million over the last six years for computer consulting and data services (the Republicans paid it $6 million for data), and the company was granted the rights to resell lists of donors to the Democratic Party, as well as to Mrs. Clinton’s Senate campaign, Mr. Clinton’s presidential library and the Clintons’ legal defense fund. ....... Gupta estimates that just being seen with Mr. Clinton, and paying him to speak at company events, has yielded millions of dollars in new business ....... was born in rural India on the Fourth of July ...... His company, with revenues of more than $400 million a year, collects, packages and resells consumer information to telemarketers and market researchers. ...... “Vin is shockingly social,” Mr. Kerrey said. “One of his gifts is he can strike up a conversation with anybody, and does. I can see why he and President Clinton got along so well, because they’re both sort of that way.” ....... the 1960s, when “all of a sudden I became a colored minority in this country” and tasted racial discrimination for the first time. ....... became friends with the Clintons after meeting President Clinton at a dinner in Washington in 1994, and soon began raising money for his re-election. .... having a consulting contract with Mr. Clinton “is definitely worth it.” ..... after skipping Mrs. Clinton’s New York fund-raiser, Mr. Gupta said he had decided to change his voter registration from Democrat to independent, saying it was “more in line with my thinking.” ..... his decisions mostly reflected a need to spend more time on his business

Bush announces new steps to revive Mideast peace process Xinhua new financial assistance to the Palestinians and calling for a new international conference this fall. ...... he laid out a new vision of two-state solution to the conflict more than five years ago. .... more than 190 million dollars .... additional resources once a plan to build Palestinian institutions is in place. ..... helping build the institutions of a Palestinian state, including effective governing structures, a sound financial system, and the rule of law ..... a successful Palestinian state in the West Bank and Gaza
Lead in Presidential Fundraising Buoys Hope for Democrats in 2008 New York Times significantly outraise their Republican counterparts ..... $83 million ... $58 million .... Obama has raised $59 million overall and banked $36.3 million at the end of June. Obama’s campaign took $4.3 million in the second quarter from California donors and $3.3 million from Illinois donors. His campaign spent about $3.2 million in payroll expenses to about 400 individuals. ..... her $63 million in overall receipts is tops in either party. Her totals include a $10 million transfer from her Senate campaign committee .... Clinton also has the most campaign cash-on-hand — $45.2 million — though that includes more than $12 million that Clinton cannot use until a general election. ...... Clinton and Obama are virtually tied in the amount of money that is available for them to spend during the primary campaign. ....... a “burn rate” that is the lowest of the Democratic candidates. Her campaign spent $2.5 million on staff salaries in the second quarter to about 320 individuals. ......... Kucinich .... raised $757,000 in the second quarter and began July with $213,000 in the bank. ..... a $6.5 million loan Romney made to his own campaign ...... Romney also has spent heavily — more than $20 million in the second quarter and more than $32 million for his campaign to date. ........ Giuliani’s campaign reported spending $1.7 million on staff salaries to about 140 individuals. It spent about $1 million in travel expenses and about $800,000 in finance consulting ........ McCain’s campaign has just $3.2 million left to spend and $1.8 million in debts. ...... Paul has run a lean campaign operation that has spent less than one-fourth of what it has received — a “burn rate” that is the lowest of any candidate.
Obama rails against 'epidemic of violence' Boston Globe "From South Central LA to Newark, N. J., there's an epidemic of violence that's sickening the soul of this nation," the Illinois senator told the crowd. ....... Nearly three dozen Chicago students have been killed this year, according to Chicago Public Schools. "We need to express our collective anger through collective action," Obama said. ..... the government must permanently reinstate an assault weapons ban and close regulatory loopholes that protect unscrupulous gun dealers. He also said the government should support and fund more after-school programs to keep young people off the streets. ........ Nader said he is considering a 2008 presidential run ..... In theory, if Thompson, a former Tennessee senator, appears for 10 minutes during prime time, NBC would have to give each of his GOP rivals the same time.
Obama to hit Chicago picket line Monday Chicago Tribune Last month marked the fourth anniversary of the strike at South Michigan Avenue property, where housekeepers, dishwashers, bartenders and other employees are engaged in one of the longest-running ongoing strikes in the nation.
Oh-eight (D): Mr. Gupta’s return MSNBC

Soccer Star David Beckham Receives Rousing Welcome in Los Angeles Voice of America
Dow and S.&P. 500 Set Record Highs
New York Times
Sunday, The Beginning of the End for Internet Radio
Intel joins $100 laptop project
Bangkok Post just months after Intel Chairman Craig Barrett dismissed the OLPC device as a "gadget" and was accused by OLPC of undercutting its efforts by launching a cheap rival called Classmate, priced at around $200. .... The OLPC laptop runs on chips provided by Intel's biggest rival, Advanced Micro Devices. .... Intel and OLPC will "explore collaborations involving technology and educational content" the companies said. Intel will also join the board of OLPC. .... Intel chips will power the servers that run the OLPC system and back up data from individual computers.
Intel, `$100 Laptop' Project Make Peace Forbes its own little "Classmate" PCs ..... in recent weeks, Negroponte and Intel CEO Paul Otellini began peace talks, culminating in a face-to-face meeting Thursday at Intel headquarters in Santa Clara .... Intel will continue to sell the Classmate, which has fallen in price from about $400 to the low $200s, attracting buyers in Pakistan, Brazil, Mexico and Nigeria ...... "It's a big problem, more than 15 people at OLPC can do all by themselves" ..... AMD has been a major partner in One Laptop Per Child, along with such other big names as Google Inc., News Corp. and Red Hat Inc.
Intel Joins OLPC Initiative PC Magazine The OLPC—made up of corporate members such as AMD, Brightstar, Chi Lin, eBay, Google, Marvell, Quanta Computer, and others—aims to provide low-cost, rugged laptops to children living in the world's most remote and poorest countries. Most recently, the initiative has struggled to produce those laptops and announced that shipments of its Quanta-made XO notebooks would be delayed until the fourth quarter of 2007. A representative for the initiative cited design changes meant to improve the notebook's performance as the reason for the delay. ....... saying that Negroponte should call his program's XO laptop a "$100 gadget," and not a computer. ....... Intel believing that underprivileged children were best served with something that has the full functionality of a PC, something reprogrammable to run all the applications of a grown-up PC, and a product that was geared toward classroom learning. ......... This past May, Negroponte lashed back at Intel in a 60 Minutes interview, saying that the company should be ashamed of itself and was undermining the initiative's progress by using philanthropy as a shameless and divisive PR tool.

WiMax Could Turn Wireless Data Into A Cheap Commodity InformationWeek The coming deployment of WiMax will likely lead to dramatic decreases in price per megabyte of mobile data, placing wireless carriers in the position of possibly losing control of their services ..... "We are already seen early signs of this scenario," said Mark Heath, co-author of the report entitled "The Future of the Global Wireless Industry: scenarios for 2007-12." ..... "Sprint Nextel(S)'s EV-DO Revision A mobile broadband service offers unlimited usage for $59.99 per month, and Sprint is undertaking substantial investment in a nationwide Mobile WiMax network." .... robust wireless networks will become transparent data pipes, and cellular carriers will likely lose control of their networks -- and lose revenue as well -- much like fixed networks have lost control and revenue in recent years. ..... "Wireless carriers [will be] forced to focus on reducing cellular network costs substantially so that they can deliver high volumes of data traffic profitably" ..... additional impacts of evolving wireless data including its influence on emerging markets and cellular usage indoors. ----------- the future role of an increasing range of technologies, including IMS, HSPA+, CDMA2000 EV-DO Revision A/B, 3G LTE, WiMAX and dedicated broadcasting technologies, as well as the impact of indoor base stations and network sharing ..... the extent to which revenue growth will continue in developed markets despite mobile penetration saturation, and the extent to which industry growth will shift from developed to developing markets. ....... ‘Emerging Markets Thrive’, ‘Cellular Goes Indoors’ and ‘Low-cost Data Pipes’. ...... “The wireless industry needs to prepare for major changes ahead. There is more uncertainty in the industry than ever before, and the market could evolve in very different ways. We have defined three plausible scenarios for the future of the global wireless industry, building on emerging trends that can already be witnessed today. Any organisation that aims to define a robust strategy must test its plans and assumptions against these scenarios.”
Network Operators' Worst Fears Realized: They Will Be Dumb Pipes InformationWeek the wireless industry's walled gardens may come crumbling down within 5 years .... The lower the cost per Megabyte per month, the less control network operators will have over their networks. ..... Wireless carriers are forced to focus on reducing cellular network costs substantially so that they can deliver high volumes of data traffic profitably. ...... Voice service via wireless is already a commodity, with the large buckets of minutes available to subscribers now versus the high per-minute charges of yesteryear. Data will eventually move in the same direction.

2 GOP senators press Bush for Iraq backup plan Chicago Tribune
Nepal Maoists slam scheme to fund unpopular king Reuters India
Giuliani Raises $15 Million for Primary FOX News
Schwarzenegger: GOP Can Lead on Climate Washington Post
Obama calls Clinton plan to repeal war resolution 'convoluted' Times of India "If you simply repeal the language, then presumably you'd have to reauthorise something. You've got 150,000 troops over there and support personnel" .... "Why we would try that approach as opposed to simply setting a timetable for withdrawal strikes me as a convoluted approach to the problem" ..... trip to push back against the perception that Clinton was racing ahead in the state that will hold the nation's second caucus, January 19.
Obama finds his stride at NAACP debate
Chicago Sun-Times
Obama: Shift Troops to Fight al-Qaida
Forbes The U.S. should shift troops from Iraq to pursue al-Qaida along the Pakistan-Afghanistan border .... "We cannot win a war against the terrorists if we're on the wrong battlefield," Obama said. "America must urgently begin deploying from Iraq and take the fight more effectively to the enemy's home by destroying al-Qaida's leadership along the Afghan-Pakistan border, eliminating their command and control networks and disrupting their funding." ..... a new U.S. intelligence assessment warned that al-Qaida has succeeded in rebuilding its strength. ..... as a consequence of bad decisions we are more at risk and less safe than we should have been at this point, given all the resources we have spent and the U.S. lives that have been lost ...... "They have entirely regrouped along the Afghanistan-Pakistan border," Obama said. "The threat of terrorism has actually increased and we've seen a massive spike in terrorist activity, in part because we did not finish the job in Afghanistan and were distracted by a war of choice in Iraq."
Actresses wage ‘Hot’ Web campaigns for Clinton, Obama Boston Herald Barak-obsessed and very attractive actress Amber Lee Ettinger - is a video featuring Hillary-obsessed and very attractive actress Taryn Southern. ...... Obama Girl got 2 million-plus hits in three weeks online. ..... Southern, a former American Idol contestant .... “Some political analysts/reporters saying that the video was way too professional to have been the work of a 21-year-old actress and was funded by an anti-Hillary political organization,” she writes. “The Right says it will hurt Hillary in the polls, the Left says it will help. I think it’s even silly to think that me dancing around in a little star spangled bikini could possibly impact the election. (ha ha!) If that’s the case, then the media isn’t giving the American public ANY credit.”
Now, A Crush-on-Hillary Video CBS News the Obama camp has yet to copy Clinton's popular Sopranos video.
Clinton spectacle one giant step back for feminism Boston Herald Bill stared at Hill adoringly, rapt, like Nancy Reagan in drag, for God’s sake, except Nancy actually felt it. .... “It’s a bad commentary on women candidates that she can’t stand on her own,” says GOP strategist Holly Robichaud. ... I really like him, despite his incredible flaws, a lot more than I like her. And that’s what they’re trying to play on ..... Hillary makes my blood boil. .... he’s got a huge brain, particularly compared to the Lilliputian one now occupying the Oval Office. ..... Bill was in New Hampshire yesterday and by her side more often than not since July 4 in Iowa, where Edwards leads. And Bill’s the star, oozing sex from every pore, no matter his age and heart problems. Crowds love him. They endure her..... six of the first 10 people he interviewed in New Hampshire admitted they’d vote for Bill over Hill if they could. Asked what she’d actually done to deserve their vote, interviewees stumbled and bumbled. One actually said, well, she’s . . .“a woman.” .... he has more talent in his baby fingernail than she has stem to stern. By him she is out-brained, out-charmed, out-skilled. ... On the stump he warms up the crowd with five minutes of “oral sex,” as some jokesters call his spiel. Then she takes the stage. Let the droning begin.“About eight minutes into her speech, some start to get distracted,” Time magazine reports this week, “holding audible conversations, even moving away from the stage.” That’s because Bill sounds intimate discussing energy policy and Hill sounds wonky “when she talks about her mother’s childhood struggles.” ..... Carmela endured Tony’s criminal ways and skirt-chasing for a fine house, status and position - none of which she could’ve gotten on her own. Hillary, in a different arena, has done the same. Yet she is, inexplicably, a feminist darling. ..... Won’t that be horrifying if we have to watch the president of the United States being embarrassed by her husband in office?
'Comeback Kid' escorts candidate Clinton to New Hampshire Eagle Tribune
Bill Clinton kept his remarks brief | to about 10 minutes, and introduced his wife by saying "the world wants to love America again." ..... It certainly will be hard to follow this president ..... "The number one thing is she's a woman," Barbara Bowman of Raymond said. ..... the former president said electing his wife will restore America's standing in the world "virtually overnight." He praised his wife's dedication in her many public roles, including yesterday morning when her arrival was delayed by nearly two hours so she could vote on a bill increasing the reward for information leading to the capture of Osama bin Laden. ........ He said his wife is the target of so much criticism because she is the candidate Republicans most fear in the general election. ..... More than 1,000 people attended the first two rallies and about double that many were in Manchester. Commenting on the crowd size, the former president recalled an early trip to New Hampshire in 1991, and being told that at least 50 people needed to attend an event "to avoid abject humiliation." About 400 showed up. ...... At their final stop, he joked: "When I ran for president, I didn't get a crowd this big in Manchester until about 14 minutes before the polls opened."
Romney, Giuliani Spend Heavily Forbes