Running for office in NJ? Please stop with the political texts (opinion)
Another political year in New Jersey. When the red badmouths the blue and vice-versa. Not to mention all the purple candidates who want to separate themselves from the pack and argue why they're the right choice to lead.
But as we primarily know, third-party candidates very rarely ever win office. Although, something has to be said about wanting to break away from the pack. With how ugly the mud-slinging gets from our two major parties, a good third option is always refreshing to see.
Unfortunately, most of us are locked onto one of the major parties giving those third-party candidates minimal chance to succeed. And it isn't necessarily a problem with messaging or lack of experience as it is with having the right political capital. Democrats and Republicans just have more cash to spend since they're the two major parties.
And we know they have that money every time an election comes around. Our mail, for one, starts to get hit with political flyers and letters. Often times if we don't agree with the message the candidate is trying to get out, we simply discard it with the rest of the junk mail.
There are also radio and TV ads. As an election approaches, both tend to get flooded with political mud-slinging. But at least these kinds of ads are more general, as opposed to those that come by mail and arrive at your exact address.
And even though political mail is more personal than TV or radio ads, there's one type of political messaging that seems to be on the rise. And it's by far more annoying and personal than any of the other kinds of ads.
Text messages from political parties are unfortunately becoming more and more common. Much like spam texts, political texts are just as bad. And often times it doesn't really matter if it's for your preferred party or not. Blue gets red texts and red gets blue. And you know what? It's very annoying.
Yes, I know it's all about getting your message out. Believe me, I get it. But you do have to realize how personal receiving a political text is. To have the phone notification go off only to realize it's a message telling me to vote no on ballot question two because the other side will rip me off for thousands if I don't.
As a matter of fact, I wouldn't be surprised if most people would not want to vote for you if those texts are obnoxious or nonstop. Now I'm sure there are some who like to receive those types of messages, but I'm betting most don't.
Hopefully, most people research the candidates first before making an informed decision. That, to me, is the smart approach over voting for someone because of a text.
Texts are meant to be personal, not political. So any candidate who feels the need to go that route automatically lowers the bar for themselves.
And most people will most likely delete them. Especially if the text message is nothing but mud-slinging. Most of us are sick of that and don't need to see it on our phone screens.
So if you're running for political office, please keep this all in mind before having your campaign send out messages to your potential voters. And if you feel you have to do it, please keep the message simple and to the point. Just tell us why you're the right choice and don't bombard us.
If you start with attacks and name-calling, you will be tuned out and that message will be deleted. Not only that, but that kind of messaging doesn't say much about what you stand for in the first place.
If you must do it, just be smart about it. And if you can't, then please don't bother. Just stick with your TV and radio ads. At least those don't have a tie to our personal phones.
Oh, and one final note for those who are running for office. New Jerseyans already get enough unwanted spam texts sent directly to their phones. Not trying to say your texts are spam, but we already get hit enough by unwanted messages.
In fact, earlier this year my phone was hit by 24 spam texts in just a month's time. Yes, 24 messages that were utter garbage. Please keep this in mind if you must send political texts and please try not to bombard us.