Writing:How to write about the history of the I&R movement

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The American tradition of direct democracy dates as early as the 1630s in the New England Colonies. Some New England town meetings still carry on that tradition.

Recording the History of Direct Democracy

So how do you start recording this unique aspect of our history? Same as anything--find the content first.

Research resources

Deciding on the article title

In an effort to create consistency, try to follow a pattern for every state. Make sure to include the state in the beginning of the title followed by "history of initiative and referendum." Further Ballotpadia naming conventions can be found here.

  • Editor's note: Once an article has been written, if you decide later that the title could be better, you can perform the "move" function on it. This is located in the top panel of your page. For more information on moving pages, go here.

Start at the beginning

Chronological order
Unlike the lists of initiatives it is best to record the history of the initiative and referendum movement in chronological order. Much of the direct democracy movement started in the Progressive Era, so that is a good place to start.

Leaders of the movement
You'll also want to include key activists in the movement. This could be a few recognizable leaders of the movement, a group that rallied around it, or representatives in the legislature that backed initiative and referendum.

Support/Opposition of instituting I&R
Include the type of support that people or legislatures gave the initiative and referendum movement. Was there significant resistance or a general outcry for I&R?

Also include how accessible the initiative and referendum laws are in your state. For example, in Illinois while initiative and referendum exists, the laws are so rigid and signature amounts so unattainable that many do not consider it an initiative and referendum state.

Examples please
If initiative and referendum met success in your state, include a few examples, ballot measures and initiatives, and trends until present time.

As always include references and external links to give your article credibility.

Formating your page

If you are at loss for how to write in "wiki" please check out our new page and editing articles.

Also remember to categorize your page and to cite your sources.