Final Round of Change.org Voting Starts Now!

Starting today, Change.org (not to be confused with the Obama administration’s website, Change.gov, which is also running a poll) has begun it’s final round of voting on public policy questions for the incoming administration.
As many of you know, our issue was the top vote getter in the preliminary voting, so there’s a very good chance that — with your help — we will finish #1.
And it is important that we do.
According to the website:

The top 10 rated ideas from the final round will be presented to the Obama administration on January 16th at an event at the National Press Club in Washington, DC, co-hosted by the Case Foundation. At the event we will also announce the launch of a national advocacy campaign behind each idea in collaboration with our nonprofit partners to turn each idea into actual policy.

Change.org’s press conference will no doubt be covered by the mainstream media. Imagine the splash we will make when the public’s call to legalize marijuana is presented as the #1 idea for the new administration.
Well, we won’t have to imagine if you get out and vote!
Right now, the public’s call to “legalize the medicinal and recreational use of marijuana” is the most popular issue on the website. (A related question asking Obama to “end the war on drugs” is #4.) However, several other important issues are just a few votes behind, so it is vital that those of you reading this post take the time to log on to the Ideas for Change website and vote to make cannabis legalization the #1 issue in America!
Voting ends at 5pm eastern time on Thursday, January 15.
Help us put the new administration and the national press on notice on January 16, 2008. Please forward this post to your friends and colleagues, and most of all: vote!

0 thoughts

  1. the website has been rigged or something! i voted on the last one but it wont let me sign in or anything now. i have several friends who have the same problem. i also know people who couldnt sign up that never voted on the questions but HAD emailed mr obamas website regarding mj decrim or legalization. kinda funny that they cant sign up in the second round eh? maybe thats why the IMPORTANT question wasnt in the top ten this time!! looks like we embarrassed them a little bit! there has got to be some underlying reason (that has never been made public) why the topic cant even be discussed. these guys have their fingers in the cookie jar somewhere. no one in their right mind would continue cannabis prohibition unless doing so would put them and many others in prison and make our government look like the corrupt, mafia-esque organization that it really is. start listening UNCLE SAM!!

  2. If NORML scheduled a protest in D.C. or anywhere for that matter… I would be there in a heartbeat no questions asked. I think it will be the only option we have if this round of questions still leaves our cause unrecognized.

  3. Please continue to vote. Regardless if the transition team gives us a real answer or not, the issue was written about in Equire, etc.
    Free the people

  4. Jim et al.
    The Change.org poll is not ‘rigged.’ First of all, by the sound of your e-mail it appears that you are conflating Change.org with Change.gov. These are two entirely different sites! The Ideas for Change/Change.org site is NOT AFFILIATED with the Obama administration (Change.gov). However, Change.org will be presenting their top 10 ideas formally to the Obama administration, and they will be partnering with non-profits to campaign the administration in support of these ideas. They will also be holding a conference at the National Press Club on 1/16 ro announce the top 10 ideas. In my mind, this poll is every bit as significant, if not more so, than the Change.gov poll(s).
    The fact that Change.org has slow downloads is a legitimate complaint but that’s because they aren’t set up for the type of heavy traffic we generate — not because there’s a plot to stifle marijuana law reform. If someone is having trouble logging on, they ought to just try back the next day. The poll is open for voting for the next two weeks.
    Please check out the following link:
    http://www.change.org/ideas?order=top#listSection
    You will see that marijuana law reform is currently #1 and that drug law reform is #3. Please vote and tell your friends and colleagues to do so to.

  5. THANK YOU AND BLESS YOU TO ALL THE SUPPORTERS!
    peace and blessings of health and higher vibration thru burnt offerings of the kine sacrament the holy healing motherplant ganja, from us all at greenfaithministry.com

  6. I believe it is time to decriminalize Cannabis. The effort by the government to stop the use of Marijuana is a total failure , a waste of time , money and lives. Most Americans do not see the personal use of Marijuana as a threat to them , the days of “reefer madness” are a generation behind us. By making a plant that any person could grow illegal only encourages criminal elements to supply the demand . To-day I read a news article about the pollution of our wilderness areas where marijuana growers set up armed camps, grow their crops ,then leave all of the mess behind, chemicals, propane tanks, garbage , human waste. If citizens could grow their own cannabis those illegal grow operations would disappear overnight.
    President Obama, if you had been busted for your use of marijuana , do you think you would be president to-day ?????
    This 4th of July declare your independence from federal oppression, be at the White House ,ring the White House with thousands of citizens, light up at noon, one HUGE smoke ring above the White House, what a beautiful sight….
    If you can’t make it to D.C. then organize around your State Capitol.

  7. This is to Jim
    I had the same problem… before I realized that the site sends an email with a link you have to follow before you can register with the site to vote.
    Anyways, I think this would be wonderful if we kept it up at number one. They can’t ignore this twice, especially seeing how ending the war on drugs is currently in second place.

  8. This is so Pathetic, voting on some stupid website or getting your picture taken at some protest is only making us look more ridiculous. I read the comments posted on change.org and change.com. All the same tired old appeals to Logic and Reason and Compassion and Due Process that I myself have made thousands of times since 1976. NO ONE CARES.
    We could easily fully legalize ( same rules as alcohol ) marijuana in the next 3 election cycles ( every 2 years). BUT WE WON’T. Not as long as we “agree to disagree on some issues while working together on others”. Gun owners NEVER vote for anyone who doesn’t tow the NRA line. Senior Citizens NEVER vote for anyone who doesn’t bow down to their political clout. They accept no compromise, they DEMAND their will be done.
    I myself VOTED FOR MARIJAUANA PROHIBITION in every election from 1980 to 1992. I voted for either the Democrat or the Republican, (when it comes to Marijauna it really doesn’t matter which). Did the candidate’s lie to me, did they betray me, did they flip on this issue. NO in each election they swore to oppose legalization with every bone in their body, AND I VOTED FOR THEM ANYWAY. Since 1994 I’ve either voted Green. Independent, or not voted at all. Was this a vote for the candidate I LEAST wanted to win. Maybe, but I didn’t vote to put myself in jail, and I never will again.
    In every state that lame halfway reforms have passed the vote was overwhelming usually winning with 55% + of the popular vote. A true landslide. Now consider this MOST ELECTIONS are decided by just 2 or 3 percent of the popular vote. We don’t even need a tenth of the votes we got in the medical and decrim elections to FULLY LEGALIZE marijuana nationwide. If a NORML sponsored candidate could capture just 5 percent of the popular vote, both major parties would fall over themselves to get that 5 percent.. But first they will try the old CAN’T WE WORK TOGETHER ON OTHER ISSUES ANYWAY. ANSWER:JUST SAY NO.
    So don’t make an ass out of yourself on Obama’s website, he didn’t lie to you. If you want your voice heard don’t try to clog his website with the same old arguments. That’s not the language of politics in the U.S. ONLY one comment WILL COMMAND ATTENTION. I DON’T SUPPORT MARIJUANA PROHIBITION AND ABSOLUTLY WILL NOT VOTE FOR ANYONE WHO DOES, PERIOD…

  9. Here’s another crazy thing about the website. It shows the questions with the most votes on the first page and then goes down from there; however, the legalization question is on the second page even though it has the most votes! whats up with that?

  10. I’ts time for NORML to get to work. If it’s serious about LEGALIZING marijuana ( not decriminalize, I wouldn’t walk across the street to vote for decriminalization), NORML needs to get down and dirty. Not Only should we have a candidate for president who can steal 2-5 percent of the popular vote (thereby getting both parties attention). Also Norml should publish and enemies list of candidates for every Senate, House, and Govenorship in every election cycle. Don’t endorse anyone (no one wants NORML’s endorsement,) instead publish an enemies list to vote against. And be punative. Sometimes picking the worst drug warrior to vote against sometimes picking the better of the two to vote AGAINST. I’d much rather see a committed drug warrior win than someone who insults me by being “not quite as bad”. I DON’T VOTE FOR “NOT QUITE AS BAD”.
    And why am I against Decriminalization. It’s a trap. If the U.S. decriminalized today, tomorrow I would still be drug tested, and
    1. Lose my job
    2. Be denied unemployment
    3. Be denied future employment
    4. Be denied disabilty even if I’m blind or paralyzed
    5. Be denied educational assistance
    6. Be denied organ transplants
    7 Be denied health care benifits
    8. Be denied due process in a court of law,
    ( true story a friend of mine was killed
    when a VERY drunk driver was going the wrong way
    on the Interstate and hit my friend head on.
    His familie’s attorney told them could not win
    compensation in court because his corpse tested
    positive for TRACES of marijuana.)
    Not going to jail does me little good if I can’t earn a living, got to the doctor, or drive a car within a month of smoking a joint. Paul McCartney can live with decriminalization, I can not.
    And to beat a dead horse when was the last time a gun owner told you, OK I’ll agree to no cop killer bullets if you let me keep my gun. Or how about a senior citizen: Sure I’ll agree to a higher premium for my MEDICARE. NO, DECRIMINALIZATION IS FOR LOSERS

  11. Just voted right now. worked alright. took a minute for the email to arrive so i could verify my account. We are wayyyy ahead of everyone else!
    FOR AMERICA! FOR MJ! FOR YOURSELVES!

  12. We’re doing it! The top 2 issues on the site are drug law reform! Finally, attention is being given to the issue of drug policy reform. We’ve been ignored as a minor constituency for too long, and now that the government sees that this really matters to the American people, they are obligated to act. Americans have to rise up against an oppressive and irrational drug policy, and we’re well on our way to doing so!

  13. We need to Advertise the Truth in our communities! Sometimes I feel as If I’m a lone supporter in Kansas City. I just keep on getting the facts out there wherever and whenever I can! Too many of us Marijuana supporters seem to give up when we’re “shot” down! We gotta keep pushing the True Facts even harder when “they” oppose! How did Women get their rights?! How did Blacks get their rights?! If we as “stoners” or “potheads” want to get our Rights, We are gonna have to Fight a whole lot harder and keep pushin’!!! This sure isn’t gonna happen on it’s own. Our society is different now than it was in the 60′,70’s,80’s & 90’s!
    We’ve got enough people-smokers & patients or not that support this issue and know the truth, they are just afraid! Get out there and make some F’n Noise and get The word out! Chris Smith- Kansas City, Mo. I’ve been a victim of this war too! At least 17 times and I won’t stop until we have our Freedom!

  14. There are three legalization questions on change.org.
    http://www.change.org/ideas?order=top#listSection
    They’re currently in 1st, 2nd, and 11th places.
    http://www.change.org/ideas/view/
    legalize_the_medicinal_and_recreational_use_of_marijuana
    http://www.change.org/ideas/view/
    end_the_war_on_drugs_3
    http://www.change.org/ideas/view/
    the_war_on_drugs_has_failed-_decriminalize_marijuana
    Vote them all up, let them know this [I][B]is [/B][/I]a big deal!!

  15. I want people to go to the New York Times and recommend my comment #41 about cannabis and Afghanistan, in Bob Herbert’s column about Afghanistan.
    I say we should legalize and make Afghan farmers into regulated suppliers.

  16. did you notice that no where can you find a category about marijuana or anything related. you ahve to search for it, and the search bar is even hidden. I am going to believe in positivity but it jsut seems strange that the top number 2 subjects are almost impossible to find. strange. lets get out there and vote and keep this number 1. Let truth prevail!

  17. There’s a neat link from change.org to The Case Foundation where a person can write a short paragraph “Change Begins With Me”. HOWEVER, you may note in the official rules:
    6a Submission Restrictions. Submissions will be deemed ineligible and will not be accepted if they include any of the following:
    any content that endorses or condones illegal drug use or alcohol abuse;
    SO – cannabis is illegal cause they say it’s illegal.
    If I stop paying taxes, because I don’t support about 95% of what my government says, I will go to jail, yet Wall Street has just stolen the futures of my family and no one is in jail??

  18. Amazing how the vote to legalize marijuana for both medical and recreational purposes has the highest votes. In my opinion I know that they know its not bad for you. But since the pressure is getting to them they have a image to uphold. My friend told me he thinks Obama is against it because of a hype that will be on him from the Anti Marijuana smokers and racist. Any bet half of the people there are saying all of this with no idea of how it is with a first hand look. If they did they would know its better then drinking the night away and making love with that porcelain queen.

  19. it wouldnt surprise me that when the polls close, somehow “magically!!” all of our questions wont make it to discussion on the mainstream. or if they did people would cry about how its not fair or a stupid topic. but the facts are that WE THE PEOPLE voted this and not the dirty politicians.

  20. Just heard on CNN that Obama doesn’t read the newspapers, that he has his staffers read them and then tell him what’s going on. Brilliant, NOT!
    No doubt a staffer will read some of the comments on change dot org but certainly not Obama himself.

  21. Declaration of Independence (1776)
    In 1776, in the middle of the American Revolutionary War, the rich white men who were leaders of the war got together to write a letter to the King of England. They wanted to explain why they were fighting to be their own country, independent of England. This is what they had to say (but in easier words):
    Sometimes one group of people decide to split off from another group, and to become an independent country, as the laws of Nature and of God say that they can. But when this happens, if they want other people to respect them, they should explain why they are splitting off.
    We think these things are obviously true:
    That all men are created equal
    That all men have some rights given to them by God
    That among these rights are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.
    So whenever any government is getting in the way of these rights, people have the right to change it or get rid of it, and to make a new government, in whatever way seems most likely to make them safe and happy.
    People should not change their government without a good reason, so people usually suffer as long as they can under the government they have, rather than change it. But when there have been a lot of problems for a long time, it is their right and their duty to throw off that government, and to set up a better government.
    We here in America have suffered for a very long time, and now we should change our government……..I did not write this but i think we all should remeber it.

  22. http://money.cnn.com/news/newsfeeds/articles/marketwire/0463664.htm
    Change.org Opens Voting for the Top 10 Ideas for America
    January 05, 2009: 04:16 PM ET
    Change.org, the leading online platform for social change, today announced
    it has opened voting for the Top 10 Ideas for America, to be presented to
    the Obama Administration at an event at the National Press Club in
    Washington, D.C., just days before the Inauguration. Each winning idea will
    form the basis of a national advocacy campaign organized in collaboration
    with leading nonprofits to translate each idea into real policy.
    The voting process comprises the second and final round of the “Ideas for
    Change in America” competition, which was launched by Change.org and MySpace
    in November 2008 in partnership with more than 50 leading nonprofit
    organizations and a dozen online political communities and voter
    registration groups, including techPresident, Netroots Nation, Declare
    Yourself, Student PIRGs, and HeadCount.
    Since the launch of the competition more than 7,500 ideas have been
    submitted, addressing major challenges ranging from global warming to the
    economy to education. More than 30,000 comments have been added and 250,000
    votes have been cast to discuss and identify the best among these ideas.
    This first round finished last week, and voting to select the 10 winning
    ideas from 100 finalists will run from January 5th through January 15th at
    http://www.change.org/ideas.
    Change.org also today announced it has partnered with the Case Foundation to
    host an event at the National Press Club on January 16, 2009 to unveil the
    Top 10 Ideas for America. At the event, Change.org and the Case Foundation
    will announce the launch of national advocacy campaigns in support of each
    idea in partnership with leading nonprofit groups. Following the
    announcement, a panel that will include Chris Hughes, co-creator of
    My.BarackObama.com, will discuss how new technology such as that used by the
    Obama Campaign can help to advance greater levels of civic participation in
    America.
    “The inauguration gives every American a renewed opportunity to get involved
    and make a difference,” said Jean Case, CEO of the Case Foundation. “Just by
    voting for Change.org’s Top 10 Ideas for America people across the country
    can help decide what some of our initial steps are and become a critical
    part of making those ideas a reality.”
    The Ideas for Change in America competition was launched in response to
    President-elect Barack Obama’s call for citizen involvement in government,
    and the overwhelming response has shown the extent of the interest people
    across the country have in participating in the policymaking process in the
    same way they were able to get involved in the 2008 campaign.
    “The Obama campaign showed the power of the internet to get millions of
    Americans to participate in politics in ways never before possible,” said
    Change.org founder and CEO Ben Rattray. “Our aim is to demonstrate how the
    same technology can be used to create a more participatory form of democracy
    and engage the American public, leverage a diverse range of voices to
    generate innovative ideas, and build momentum for specific policy change. We
    hope this is the first of many efforts to use new models of online
    collaboration and organizing to effect the change that so many millions
    across the country seek.”

  23. I just watched the Obama speach about how BAD our economy is… we REALLY need to let everyone know that simply making the growing and using of HEMP legal again along with Decriminalizing Marijuana for Medical use or Legalizing in for Responsible adult use will fix our struggling economy… Why is it SO HARD for the poloticians to see this..?!?!?!?! legaize HEMP and Marijuana and within one season our economy will be close to having a surplus.. It just might have a surplus.. ONE YEAR thats all it would take.. withing one year there would be SO MANY jobs. Just do to the HEMP growing industry .. we would probably have and abundance of food. Bio-fuel etc.. and Decriminaling or making Marijuana legal would just about fix our poor healthcare system. The poloticians have to be making ALOT of $$$ stopping them from seeing the truth.
    DOING this will cure or make helthy our struggling economy..!!!

  24. Just to make it perfectly clear — we can cast our votes on change.org, yes, and we should, but the second round of “open for questions’ is going on at the Obama Website as well. At the moment there is still a cannabis question in the top 10. We can bring it back up to the top. Once you get to the site, put in a search for marijuana, (cannabis, hemp) and vote them up. This link: http://change.gov/page/content/openforquestions20081229/ will take you there, or just go to Change.gov, open for questions.

  25. ya i voted for all topics marijuana ones that really matter..like legalization or ending war on drugs..ya if u guys are gonna protest in dc let me know for sure post it..im down

  26. If you don’t adhere to every action that is asked of you on the site you can no longer vote or post. That even means telling agreement to going to the inauguration. If you don’t check the terms and agree then your request is nullified. It’s BS. “We find that people are more respectful when they aren’t anonymous.” Really? Is that why their are so many multiple created accounts that have nothing but ill will and insulting remarks towards this cause. I thought you could only make one account? WTF?

  27. Massachusetts police chiefs legalize marijuana
    January 6, 1:00 PM
    by J.D. Tuccille, Civil Liberties Examiner
    http://www.examiner.com/x-536-Civil-Liberties-Examiner
    ~y2009m1d6-Massachusetts-police-chiefs-legalize-marijuana
    Police chiefs in towns like Auburn and Clinton, Massachusetts would undoubtedly deny that they have any interest in legalizing marijuana, but that’s what they’re about to effectively accomplish. Bent out of shape by the details of Question 2, the decriminalization measure that voters passed in November, those law-enforcement officials have announced that they won’t bother issuing tickets to people caught smoking marijuana.
    The new law, in effect since Friday, replaces criminal penalties with a $100 fine for possession of less than an ounce of marijuana. The text of the law also forbids any repercussions whatsoever, from denial of student loans to inclusion in a criminal record to consideration during applications for status as an adoptive parent.
    But in what is likely a clever sleight of hand by legalization advocates, the law, by pulling arrest off the table as an option, deprives police officers of any means to compel people caught with marijuana to show identification. Anybody willing to say “Donald Duck” to a cop who nabs him with a joint and asks for a name can escape even the $100 fine.
    And that’s a good thing.
    Marijuana is now not only de facto legal in a few Massachusetts communities because police find the requirements of decriminalization too demanding, it is now effectively sanction-free in the entire state for anybody willing to face down a cop.
    The added benefit is that the state will not be collecting much revenue from those fines. Anything that denies resources to the government is a good thing.
    Governments never had the right to tell consenting adults what they can and can’t buy from and sell to each other, or put into their own bodies. We’re not quite at the point where politicians are willing to concede that point. But we’re getting closer when police simply throw up their hands and effectively allow people to exercise their rights unmolested.

  28. Don’t just vote, ask more questions! There are plenty of questions regarding the issue and the more that are asked will also show our concerns!

  29. I just watched the video response to “open For Questions” at:
    http://change.gov/newsroom/entry/open_for_questions_round_2_response/
    Not even one word about the failed War on Drugs, stopping DEA raids on medical marijuana patients, marijuana decriminalization or regulation and taxation is even mentioned.
    Marijuana law reformers are brushed aside with only a written repeat of Obama’s insulting reply from the 1st round of questions regarding marijuana taxation and regulation…“President-elect Obama is not in favor of the legalization of marijuana.” And to add insult to injury the repeat of this one liner is at the very bottom of the page at the link above.
    Believing that Obama is going to base his policies on proven science is now an obvious lie.

  30. “Will you consider legalizing cannabis/marijuana/hemp so that the government can regulate it, tax it, put age limits on it, and create millions of new jobs and create a multi-billion dollar industry right here in the U.S.?”—DJ C, Chicago, IL
    Open for Questions Response, 12/15/08: “President-elect Obama is not in favor of the legalization of marijuana.”
    Ok, this scares the crap out of me. Just went to change.gov and not only did they not even touch upon the drug war question they answered a question pertaining to marijuana that is *very* similar to the last question with a pointer to the last answer and I don’t remember even seeing that question in the top questions! Are they trying to send us a message to give up!? I don’t care about marijuana anymore, we will smoke whether they like it or not and I don’t want to pay a “sin tax” to do what we humans have been doing for over 3000 years. I care about this country and the fact that Obama is following in Bush’e footsteps to not upset the status quo and effect true change sickens me! NORML had it right all along don’t waste your votes on people that *hint* at freedom vote for people that will stand against tyranny… RON PAUL 2012!!!

  31. not only did I vote but I gave them a piece of my mind as well…
    The following was my post over there at Change.gov
    “Abraham Lincoln once said it best when he stated
    “Prohibition will work great injury to the cause of temperance. It is a species of intemperance within itself, for it goes beyond the bounds of reason in that it attempts to control a man’s appetite by legislation, and makes a crime out of things that are not crimes. A Prohibition law strikes a blow at the very principles upon which our government was founded.”
    The US govt has EVERY right to protect me from others; this there can be no dispute. This govt. cannot, however fly the banner of freedom while it tries to protect us from ourselves. NO govt has that right where freedom and liberty are concerned. Forget not the Constitutional right to be secure in our papers, persons, possessions from unreasonable search and seizure.
    For the rights to self governance are unmatched in importance to the retention of freedom in this great nation.
    Let us not fall to the path of the Hypocritical States of America.
    Let us realize finally that after over 70 years of WAR against our own people; that the time has come to end this madness and insanity against a plant that has multiple medical uses; is less harmful than most of the food we eat, has cause 0, count that, 0 deaths in all of recorded history; was made illegal through racism and greed of companies like DuPont.
    Not to mention the cost to taxpayers in funding the ever-growing prison population thanks to a constant increase in the arrests for Cannabis. Of which the majority are for simple possession.
    How can this govt boast of freedom and righteousness when the most basic of freedoms, ie.. self governance, are being withheld from the people of this nation?
    There are more than enough rational ideas on ways to regulate and safely endorse the recreational use of Cannabis with moderation and responsibility.
    Remember the above quote from Mr. Lincoln… and remember it well… for our freedom and liberty lie in the balance.
    Thank you for your time, and God bless this great nation to see it to a brighter future for all, not just for some.
    Jerry “Tone” Borelli”

  32. They think we’re gonna take the same answer they gave us last time? NO! We have to e-mail Obama and tell him that it isn’t about what HE wants, it’s about what WE want. Questions for decriminalization were 1st in National Security and 2nd in Additional Issues on change.gov. We cannot let our new president ignore us or our cries for change. E-mail Obama and tell him we want marijuana decriminalized not years from now and not when we have a president that thinks we’re ready; we want it NOW.

  33. I say If President Obama doesnt listen to our young generation…. we call for impeachment and we get a petition going, every marijuana user must sign, and we will impeach him for infringing on our rights as free people. They cant tell us we cant smoke Marijuana who are they, im sorry Govt but you have a title thats all and I swear on my life ill smoke marijuana til the day I die and so will millions of others. SO My brothers and sisters If he doenst listen to our cries..please stand with me and sign my petition but only if ignorance consumes obama and he doesnt acknowledge will I make this petition but the people must know if he doesnt even answer this question IT MEANS HE DOESNT GIVE A SHIT ABOUT WHAT 2/3 OF THIS COUNTRY THINKS AND U BEST BELEIVE HE COULD GIVE SHIT WHERE AMERICAS GOIN

  34. I believe in the constitution of the United States of America as a whole. It is likend to a spoked wheel, remove a spoke and the wheel is weakened. Restore our wheel and many of the other problems we have as a free society will take care of themselves. End prohibition Today and use some of the procedes to get us out of the hole that past political figures have dug for us while they were lining their pockets with money from Synthetic manufactures and pharmaceutical conglomerates.
    Charles

  35. So what happens now that Obama said no to this?
    Who else is disappointed by his lies about “change we can believe in”?

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