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Making the Most of "Meg-a-Tar"

BY Nancy Scola | Monday, March 22 2010

The New York Times had a piece this weekend describing a new ad technique being used out in California that features a claymation-like avatar of Meg Whitman, Republican candidate in the governor's race there, saying bad things about Meg Whitman.

The written piece is a bit tough to make sense of without watching the ad itself. But that you can only do if you actually "become a fan" of Level the Playing Field on Facebook. Which is not a bad way (NYT story on A1 of the Sunday edition + mandatory Facebook following) for LTPF to pick up some attention.

Those of you who follow Democratic campaigns might not be surprised to learn that the strategy is the work, it seems, of Chris Lehane. Lehane is the hard-charging Democratic campaign vet known for making creative use of both opposition research and the peculiarities of reporters and their news cycles. LTPF is also the group behind the WikiMeg experiment we've written about. Level the Playing Field is working to back Jerry Brown's bid for governor, but is not directly connected to his campaign.

The Times reports Lehane saying that the costing of creating the "Meg-a-tar" was a cool $30,000, which makes one think that they could have saved some money emulating the good folks at Red vs Blue.

Your completely random bonus fact of the day is that a "megatar" already happens to be, well, a thing. According to Wikipedia, it's a "stringed musical instrument designed to be played with two-handed tapping."

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In Mexico, A Wiki Makes Corporate Secrets Public

Earlier this year the Latin American NGO Poder launched Quién Es Quién Wiki (Who's Who Wiki), a corporate transparency project more than two years in the making. The hope is that the platform will be the foundation for a citizen-led movement demanding transparency and accountability from businesses in Mexico. Data from Quién Es Quién Wiki is already helping community activists mobilize against foreign companies preparing to mine the mountains of the Sierra Norte de Puebla.

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