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Grassrootsiness

Watch out. Just because a campaign is using social media or getting a lot of support online, doesn't mean it's really grassroots. Claims of money raised via the Internet, as well as tallies of small donations versus large donors, or other newer metrics of public participation like Twitter retweets or YouTube views, don't prove anything. Such signs offer hints that a candidate or movement is resonating with the public, nothing more. If anything, campaigns often want to encourage the appearance of being "grassroots" while obscuring where the real money and power resides. The political media needs to be skeptical of this have-your-cake-and-eat-it-too approach; too often what is said to be "grassroots" would be better described as "grassrootsy."

New Obama for America Page is a Jungle Gym for Donation Data

BY Nick Judd | Thursday, October 20 2011

Source: Barackobama.com Obama for America has released a website for users to explore data about the campaign's donor base, in order to celebrate, per the campaign, their one-millionth donor. The application allows users ... Read More

Grassroots vs Grassrootsy: How to Parse Technology's Role in Politics

BY Micah L. Sifry | Monday, July 18 2011

For a whole bunch of reasons, we should be on guard against claims that money given online, as well as tallies of small donations versus large donors, or other newer metrics of public participation like Twitter retweets ... Read More

CNN Coverage of Organizing for America: "President Obama's Grassroots Army"

BY | Friday, March 27 2009

Today on the Situation Room, CNN aired a segment on Organizing for America and volunteers' recent efforts to build support for the President's budget, as all the work being done to harness the energy of the largest ... Read More

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First POST: Overreaching

Why the FCC balked at the Comcast-TimeWarner deal; Sheryl Sandberg wants Hillary Clinton to lean into the White House; the UK's Democracy Club brings a lot more information to election season; and much, much more. GO

thursday >

First POST: Ownership

"Tell us more about your bog"; the shrinking role of public participation on campaign websites; "Aaron's Law" has been reintroduced in Congress; is the Comcast-TimeWarner merger on its last legs?; and much, much more. GO

wednesday >

First POST: Bush League

Presidential candidates hiding behind Super PACs; what this means for American democracy; demos at the White House; a demand for Facebook to be more open about news in the newsfeed; and much, much more. GO

tuesday >

First POST: Glass Half Full

A new Pew study on open government data in the US; the FOIA exemption ruffling transparency advocates' feathers; social media bot farms; and much, much more. GO

monday >

First POST: Zucked Up

Mark Zuckerberg responds to criticism of "zero rating" Facebook access in India; turning TVs into computers; how Facebook is changing the way UK users see the upcoming General Election; BuzzFeed's split priorities; a new website for "right-of-center women"; and much, much more. GO

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