Wednesday, March 21, 2007

a brave new world

The emergence of the Hillary 1984 Youtube spot raises a lot of interesting questions. How and where do we get information on political candidates? Who is responsible for the material? How does it compare to official campaign "spin?" Is the source an independent grassroots voice, or is it actually disinformation from the campaign that is designed to appear as independent?

In case you're not up to speed on this, a digitally re-edited version of Apple's 1984 Think Different ad has appeared on Youtube, posted by someone using the pseudonym ParkRidge47 (referring to Hillary's hometown and year of birth). It ends with a link to BarackObama.com, but Obama's campaign says they had no part in creating this ad.

The explosive growth of blogs and Youtube is rapidly changing the political campaign process, creating many grassroots opportunities to affect campaigns from the outside. It is much easier to expose questionable campaign donors and other information that usually would not see the light of day in the pre-digital age.

The Seattle Post-Intelligencer ran a relevant news article on the phenomenon.

It feels like the winds of change are blowing in a big way. We've certainly seen plenty of local examples, such as our 49th ward aldermanic run-off. I'd imagine that political campaigns may be very different 10 years from now, as grassroots efforts increase in prominence and influence. Power to the people! Keep on blogging!

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