“You” politics arrives?

New York Times reports that John Edwards will announce his candidacy on Thursday. It reports: “Mr. Edwards, who is arguably the most Web-savvy candidate in the ’08 race to date, is using Thursday’s event to try to gin up his supporters via the Internet.”

Some of you have been guessing that is where I’m headed. I can’t confirm or deny that yet but let’s just say I’ve been looking into how all the candidates, Republican, Libertarians, and Democrats, have been using the Internet to fire up supporters. At this stage they mostly need money — some reports are saying a decently-run campaign this year will take more than $50 million. For comparison, Edwards, last time around, raised about $17 million and he’s been beaten lately by Barack Obama (link to Wikipedia) who gives more exciting speeches, drawing large crowds who get excited enough to donate money.

Joe Trippi (link to Wikipedia), who last time around collected a record amount for the Howard Dean campaign (Joe understood blogging, social media, and Internet communities a lot better than Howard Dean did) wrote an interesting post over on MyDD today: Transformational Politics, where he writes “More than ideology, or any other factor — true transformational leadership can only come from a candidate who fundmentally gets that it isn’t about him/her — its about us.”

Already look at how people are posting information about the candidates to Wikipedia. No more “control the message” here. The only way to control this beast is to lay it all out there and make yourself, and your views, open to everyone.

I find this all very interesting, no matter where on the political spectrum you are. It used to be the only place to get political information was to look at the propoganda done by the major parties, or by reading the voter pamphlet, or by reading the occassional editorial or news report in either your local newspaper or in a paper like the Washington Post or New York Times, or by attending a rally and listening to a speech (where you usually got emotionally riled up, but didn’t actually learn all that much — I attended such speeches by Ronald Reagan and Walter Mondale, my photo of Ronald Reagan is still hanging in the Silicon Valley Republican Headquarters).

How did I find that New York Times article above? I went to Google News and had an alert set on John Edwards.

I’ll bet that within a few hours that’ll be linked into the Wikipedia page on John Edwards.

What, you don’t like John Edwards? Well, every candidate has a similar Wikipedia page.

They are all linked off of this Wikipedia page: 2008 Presidential Election (great page, with lots of links)
Who’s in charge of this election? You are. Any one of us can post a video that’ll change the outcome of this election. That video will get found thanks to the much more efficient word-of-mouth network that is social media.

Will your videos change this election? Damn straight they will. Here’s a search on YouTube for “John Edwards.” — I see lots of amateur videos. I’m certain many more will come.

Anyway, I have a feeling that Ernie the Attorney and I are gonna be drinking beer in some fine New Orleans establishment in about 24 hours talking with all of you. :-)

Of course you’re coming along. I’ll even send you some beads. :-)

Think of how to get political candidates to talk with you and answer the kinds of things you care about.

I have a feeling we should just setup a wiki.

61 thoughts on ““You” politics arrives?

  1. Pingback: Conversations^2
  2. Lord, here’s a clue for you Robert, of course, you’ll come up with a reason why sound bites on a blog are SO much better than in “traditional” media.

    In Kansas, which is red as red can be, Nancy Boyda, a Democratic candidate thoroughly beat Jim Ryun, not only the Republican Candidate, but a rather famous ex-athlete, and pretty popular in his district.

    What was one of the, if not the biggest keys to her victory? She stopped treating voters like they were dumb. She reasoned that people who read newspapers vote. So instead of sound bites, she took out multipage ads and explained, in fair detail, her positions. She didn’t talk down to the readers. She didn’t assume they had the attention spans of a gnat, or the intelligence of a rock. She treated them like she would want to be treated, as intelligent, thoughtful people capable of comprehending and digesting complex issues.

    She won by a rather solid margin.

    You rattle and natter on about blogs and videos, and yet, due to your myna-like thought process, you miss the point entirely.

    The MEDIUM is meaningless. It is the CONTENT that counts. Blogs and podcasts and vidcasts don’t CREATE content. They only transmit it. They are EXACTLY as susceptible to gaming and manipulation as anything else. Boyda won using a 300-year old technology, because she provided GOOD CONTENT. It was the message that counted Robert, not the medium.

    Your fervent, even blind belief that a thousand monkeys at a blog entry will magically make for better content, or more honesty, or some kind of magical resistance to manipulation is hysterical, when you consider how much of the A-List stays there solely by talking about THEMSELVES and BLOGGING. The only thing you can bet a thousand monkeys will create is flying crap. Which is a nice description of the “blogosphere”.

    In fact, you’re probably the most easily manipulated of them all. All you care about is how “competent” the candidate appears at “Teh Intarweb”. That’s all that matters in your world…do they worship at the BlogAlter with you and with the same fervency. If they do, they’re “good”. If not, they’re “bad”.

    How, pray tell, is that any different that the manipulation of any other group by political parties?

  3. Lord, here’s a clue for you Robert, of course, you’ll come up with a reason why sound bites on a blog are SO much better than in “traditional” media.

    In Kansas, which is red as red can be, Nancy Boyda, a Democratic candidate thoroughly beat Jim Ryun, not only the Republican Candidate, but a rather famous ex-athlete, and pretty popular in his district.

    What was one of the, if not the biggest keys to her victory? She stopped treating voters like they were dumb. She reasoned that people who read newspapers vote. So instead of sound bites, she took out multipage ads and explained, in fair detail, her positions. She didn’t talk down to the readers. She didn’t assume they had the attention spans of a gnat, or the intelligence of a rock. She treated them like she would want to be treated, as intelligent, thoughtful people capable of comprehending and digesting complex issues.

    She won by a rather solid margin.

    You rattle and natter on about blogs and videos, and yet, due to your myna-like thought process, you miss the point entirely.

    The MEDIUM is meaningless. It is the CONTENT that counts. Blogs and podcasts and vidcasts don’t CREATE content. They only transmit it. They are EXACTLY as susceptible to gaming and manipulation as anything else. Boyda won using a 300-year old technology, because she provided GOOD CONTENT. It was the message that counted Robert, not the medium.

    Your fervent, even blind belief that a thousand monkeys at a blog entry will magically make for better content, or more honesty, or some kind of magical resistance to manipulation is hysterical, when you consider how much of the A-List stays there solely by talking about THEMSELVES and BLOGGING. The only thing you can bet a thousand monkeys will create is flying crap. Which is a nice description of the “blogosphere”.

    In fact, you’re probably the most easily manipulated of them all. All you care about is how “competent” the candidate appears at “Teh Intarweb”. That’s all that matters in your world…do they worship at the BlogAlter with you and with the same fervency. If they do, they’re “good”. If not, they’re “bad”.

    How, pray tell, is that any different that the manipulation of any other group by political parties?

  4. @29. In time, yes. But I think we are one or two elections too early for that to have a major impact. I don’t think it will happen with the election to the level Scoble believes. I’m happy to be proven wrong, but there is still too much that has to happen with the process and the machinery for this change to happen. Now, if candidates can see this generating more campaign funding for them, then that will accelerate the impact

  5. @29. In time, yes. But I think we are one or two elections too early for that to have a major impact. I don’t think it will happen with the election to the level Scoble believes. I’m happy to be proven wrong, but there is still too much that has to happen with the process and the machinery for this change to happen. Now, if candidates can see this generating more campaign funding for them, then that will accelerate the impact

  6. As John Welch said, there are still too many older voters that have more of an impact on elections the care more about other issues than getting their “dialogue” from the net. They much prefer the candidates show up face to face, and will still get their information from traditional means.

    Sounds very MSM to me. This is not what I think the next election’s voters will be like..necessarily.

  7. As John Welch said, there are still too many older voters that have more of an impact on elections the care more about other issues than getting their “dialogue” from the net. They much prefer the candidates show up face to face, and will still get their information from traditional means.

    Sounds very MSM to me. This is not what I think the next election’s voters will be like..necessarily.

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