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Daily Digest: Taking It to the Streets

BY Nancy Scola | Thursday, September 25 2008

The Web on the Candidates

  • Grassroots Bailout Anger Breaks Bounds of the Internet: It's probably not every day that Vermont socialist Senator Bernie Sanders and Kentucky's uber-conservative Senator Jim Bunning get nearly the same emails for standing up against the same bill. But emails are pouring into every corner of Capitol Hill objecting to the Bush Administration's $700 billion no-oversight bailout measure, and members of Congress, reports the New York Times' Sheryl Gay Stolberg, say that the emails seem to be "individual expressions that come from the grass roots" -- not part of the coordinated campaigns that can flood Congress. Wired's Sarah Lai Stirland covers something our own Micah Sifry has been watching: the wave of spontaneous online protests against the bailout that's now streaming offline. This afternoon at 4 ET, protesters inspired by the BuyMySh#%tpile meme and anti-bailout emails circulating around the web will amass near the Wall Street's famous bull sculpture with, in the words of organizer and activist Andrew Boyd, "their 8-track cassette collections, their old Spice Girl CDs, their surf boards that got bit by sharks and old Enron stock certificates" they'd like Congress to take off their hands. #

  • Who's Betting Against Obama?: A quick peek at InTrade's Electoral Vote Predictor might be a fun way to take the temperature of the betting class, but FiveThirtyEight's Nate Silver reports that the market seems funny of late. "Every so often, some individual trader or some small group of traders are shorting all the Obama contacts in bulk and resetting the entire market... What's a little weird, however, is that this rouge trader is not only selling Obama contracts and buying McCain contracts .... they also seem to be buying Hillary Clinton contracts." #

  • GOP Keeping Track of Bidenisms: "Joe Biden's gaffes have become so excessive that we've now dedicated an entire site," says the Republican National Committee, which had previously been keeping track of the Dem VP candidates supposedly goofs with a simple clock. Whatever you make of the highlight slips, the site's beautiful interface is, frankly, a case study in how oppo teams can handle powerful but unwieldy video clips. #

The Candidates on the Web

  • Women Lead in Candidate Video Consumption: Here's one more crack in the political glass ceiling: as of August, women now make up the bulk of the viewers of web video on both and, according to new Nielsen numbers. That's nothing new for Obama's site, but McCain's female viewership jumped ten percentage points to 58% to after the addition of Sarah Palin to the ticket -- though, as Silicon Alley Insider points out, Palin might not take all the credit, as she joined Team McCain at the very end of the month. #

TechCongress and Beyond

  • Wired Says Next President Needs Some Sunlight: The Sunlight Foundation's Ellen Miller has been named by Wired as one of the 15 People the Next President Should Talk To. Ellen was so honored for her vision to "make Washington more like the web," one that she's been amazingly active putting into practice over the fewer than three years since Sunlight's launch. Witness, for example, Public Markup, Earmark Watch, The Open House Project, and more. (Thanks Allison Fine) (Disclosure: PdF's Andrew Rasiej and Micah Sifry are senior strategic advisors to Sunlight.) #

In Case You Missed It...

Nancy Scola reports from the Clinton Global Initiative on how Bill Clinton applies business-world metrics to philanthropy through his MyCommitment.Org.

Micah Sifry has a run down on how we can all participate in tomorrow night's presidential debate at Ole Miss -- if, you know, it actually takes place.