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Daily Digest: 5/24/07

BY Joshua Levy | Thursday, May 24 2007

The Web on the Candidates

  • Over at TechRepublican, Jim Durbin writes that the way for conservatives to match the energy of the left-wing netroots is to strongly convey Republican messages online. The key, says Durbin, is to stay on message on blogs, discussion boards, social networking sites, everywhere: "If you believe as I do, that our strength is in our reasoned approach to issues - mainly that in winning the arguments, we'll win the elections, than the strategy is simple." Durbin takes for granted that people will simply be won over by better arguments -- there are actually ideologies and political beliefs at stake here -- and his position that "the reasoned argument on the left is outweighed by emotion. On the right, reasoned argument is actually our strength," is not so reasonable in itself... But we give him credit for seeking out ways to invigorate online conservatives.

The Candidates on the Web

  • Hillary Clinton used her YouTube Spotlight moment to ask supporters to choose her campaign's theme song, and the original video has received over 525,000 views, helping her dethrone Barack Obama as the most candidate with the most YouTube buzz. Today, she's released an update to the video that's actually, surprisingly, amazingly, funny. It includes clips from supporters who have sent in their interpretations of what the song should be and Hillary's reactions, which are warm, funny, and real-seeming. I think this is the first time she's released an online video that actually takes advantage of the web -- it's informal and mashes-up other people's work. The Politico's Ben Smith kind of likes it too, though he noticed something interesting about her choice of videos: "Clinton teasingly includes a handful of angry, critical responses, all from young, white men; they're just the sort of attackers that she's long used to raise her stature. They're adolescent Rick Lazios [the Republican who ran against Clinton for Senate in 2000].
  • William Beutler of Blog P.I. likes Rudy Giulani's web site, but he's getting shut out of the campaign's communications system. Upon visiting the site you're presented with an email sign-up form; he's filled it out three times but hasn't received any emails. "I have tried signing up from different computers in different locations, entering addresses from the District, Arlington and Oregon. Nada, zip, zilch. What gives? Something is up with the database software managing their contact information, I presume. I’ve been going about signing up for e-mails from the Big Six and some of the others, but so far only the Giuliani campaign has kept me in the dark," he writes. No email? Beutler turned to Twitter, but he tried to add Giuliani as a friend there and nothing happened. He's guessing the Giuliani camp has started an account, but hasn't committed to using it yet. In any event, these snafus don't exactly signal an open approach to supporters.
  • Mike Huckabee is the next participant in YouTube's Spotlight series. He uses his moment to promote his tax platform, which he calls the "fair tax": "it's fairer, it's flatter, it's finite, it's family friendly." He doesn't actually explain what the proposal is, but asks for our response nonetheless. A strange video.

News Briefs

RSS Feed wednesday >

New Media Sites in Iran Blur Lines Between Citizen Journo, Professional Journo, & Activist

In 2010, Newsweek declared Iran the “birthplace of citizen journalism.” Iranian bloggers were hailed by Westerners as “brave” for their coverage of the aftermath of the disputed 2009 election. A 40-second video of the death of Neda Agha-Soltan during an anti-government protest won a prestigious George Polk Award, the first anonymously-produced work to be so honored. And then came the 2013 study “Whither Blogestan,” which sought to explain Iran's shrinking blogosphere. Of nearly 25,000 highly active and connected blogs in 2008 and 2009, only 20 percent were still online in September 2013.

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