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Daily Digest: The First Twitter Interview?

BY Joshua Levy | Monday, March 31 2008

The Web on the Candidates

  • Data digger Matthew Hurst has another update on’s tracking of visits to Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton’s websites. Starting with a deceptively simple
    chart showing that, since December, Obama’s site has received more traffic than to Clinton’s, he explores something more interesting. More people may show up at Obama’s site, but the trend has been to spend more time at Clinton’s. And Clinton also has a bigger share of “attention” — Compete’s way of measuring online engagement. It’s tough to say what this all means without analyzing more data, but while Clinton may not be scoring social media points, voters are getting deep on her site.

  • This is excellent: a candidate of mayor of London will become the first UK politician — and possibly the first politician anywhere — to be interviewed on Twitter. London voters can follow the candidate, Brian Paddick, and post questions to him (@brianpaddick) on Twitter. I love quotes like this: “My Twitter interview will let people put questions directly to me about any topic related to the election.” Such a simple phrase, yet one not uttered by any US presidential candidate.

  • Speaking of Twitter, be sure to catch the Wall Tweet Journal when it launches in May. It’ll feature a Twitter-specific search engine (Twoogle), profiles of Twitterati, and of course, a Tweetroll.

  • Also, check out the Summer of Change contest being hosted by the California Democratic Party. The party is asking Californians to submit videos describing the nature of the problems faced by the state, and what’s a stake (with the idea being that, you know, only Dems can fix things).

The Candidates on the Web

  • He’s still not running for president, but he is launching a campaign. This weekend Al Gore announced a new $300 million campaign to push climate change to the forefront of the nation’s consciousness. The nonpartisan project will include TV commercials featuring super duos like Pat Robertson and Al Sharpton and Nancy Pelosi and Newt Gingrich, all agreeing on the need to find a solution to global warming. The campaign hub is at, an impressive site proposing solutions, forms of action, and more. (But please, please, please, no more Flash-based people that pop up and start talking when you load a page; this is a distressingly popular fad.)

In Case You Missed It…

From Personal Democracy Forum: TxtMob, a group SMS service and its creator, Tad Hirsch, a long-time MobileActive colleague, have been subpoenaed by the city of New York to turn over information about TxtMob users and activists who participated in the 2004 protests against the Republican National Convention there. The city, involved in a law suit, has requested that the TxtMob creators turn over text messages, phone numbers, and other personal information.’s Katrin Verclas calls the news a blow to privacy and a chilling development.

Micah Sifry had the pleasure of sitting down with Joe Trippi a week ago, and he captured the encounter on video using his new Flip video recorder (which will explain the production values). As you’ll see, they covered a lot of interesting ground. In online political video, “We’re all pioneers now,” says Trippi.

Last week the New York Times turned its gaze to the patterns of political connection young people are establishing in social media. Fred Stutzman didn’t find anything surprising or groundbreaking, as we’re saying the same things about “digital natives” that we’ve been saying about bloggers for ages.