Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Blogging for Edwards

Lindsay Beyerstein of Majikthise has an article on Salon about the blogging problems of the Edwards' campaign. She was herself approached to blog for John Edwards, but declined, because she anticipated the political backlash that Amanda Marcotte and Melissa McEwan encountered for their outspoken views.

Beyerstein was surprised that the campaign failed to understand that the "blogosphere isn't just 'The Situation Room' with swear words, it's a space for writers to explore ideas that are outside the bounds of mainstream discourse." It's, in part, the domain of "independent polemicists" who can better serve their chosen causes and candidates from "outside the campaign." She distinguishes polemicists from the "party activist" bloggers, who avoid outrageous statements and opinions.

Politicians who fail to grasp the blogosphere's cultural standards of discourse, in their haste to capitalize on the its potential for grassroots organizing, are setting themselves up for the kind of trouble the Edwards campaign has suffered.

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