As educated consumers, we try to keep up on the latest boycotts and ethical practices of employers so we can make responsible buying decisions, but it isn’t always easy. Next Monday, a free iPhone app, BizVizz, will be available in the app store to help people track taxes, government subsidies and political campaign donations of major corporations.
The app’s creator, Brad Lichtenstein, created BizVizz after his film production company, 371 Productions, released the documentary, “As Goes Janesville,” which follows a company in Wisconsin that obtained taxpayer dollars without any public input.
“I watched the democratic process being subverted and felt we should do something on a grander scale to make corporate behavior more transparent, especially when we’re all called on to do our part during tough economic times,” said Lichtenstein. The Independent Television Service (ITVS), funded by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, backed BizVizz to extend the movie’s impact.
Once you download the app, simply enter a company’s name or snap a picture of its logo and then the company information pops up. Future developments include creating an Android version of the app and expanding the catalog of corporate information.
Check out a 10-minute clip of “As Goes Janesville.” The documentary will air for the second time on PBS on Feb. 3. Check your local listings for times.