Mayor Bloomberg's campaign, like many political campaigns, is using automated phone calls to remind voters to go to the polls this November 3 (because God knows they're not that interested). But most candidates, especially those on the local level, don't shell out somewhere around $100 million on their campaigns, and with that kind of money, Bloomberg has the ability to make his robocalls quite a bit more sophisticated. Which is why instead of hearing Hizzoner's nasal voice on the other end of your phone in the near future, you may hear someone who sounds exactly like you or, at least, someone who appeals to you in some very specific way.
Chinatown residents older than 45, for example, could get a call that is two-thirds Chinese and one-third English. Younger voters would hear more English with a bit of Chinese. Caribbean-American voters could get calls in English, but with a Caribbean lilt.
Those who live in large apartment complexes might hear a recording of their building manager or a well-known resident. New Yorkers who live in liberal, politically active neighborhoods like Brooklyn's Park Slope could get a call from the leader of Planned Parenthood or another group that advocates for a Democratic issue.
Single straight men who live in walk-ups might get a call from that hot girl they always smile at when they pass in the stairwell. People with swine flu could hear someone who coughs occasionally during their recording. Yankee fans with a mother from Thailand and a father who served in the Army may hear the voice of Johnny Damon. People who pretend to hate The Hills but secretly watch every episode online, alone in their rooms, with headphones on, might hear from Heidi Montag. Stuff like that.
NYC mayor takes voter targeting to the extreme [AP via Forbes]