Monday, June 23, 2008

Patrick Ruffini (the new right)

Ron Paul -- a lot of people questioned, are they even on the right? Shown how the right can innovate online, better way to raise money online;

What's happened after the campaign -- Ron Paul has gone to every convention possible, and taken over leadership without opposition. Shows that a small, networked group beats the off line institutions (large, atomized group) that we currently see in local politics in America. Every candidate that relied on the high-dollar, bundler model, lost. Newer style campaigns won. Many republicans are still shocked that Hillary lost.

Before we can take this battle to the democrats, we have to clean our own house.

the bigger challenge is how to use the movement to proscribe a positive agenda. biggest challenge for the RightRoots over the next few years.

Is it about about "stopping" things? channeling outrage? or is there something positive that we can do?

Jane: right, mostly outrage generates donations. i will make the argument for the passion for obama was actually about hillary clinton.

Micah: is being in the opposition better for the Right roots?

Patrick: around the globe, where conservatives are out of power, they're ahead online. i do think that people get upset to stop things.

An exception: Gingrich's "drill now, drill here" has 1 million signatures.

Lenora Fulani question: independents are playing a role in rebooting american politics. where do they fit?

Jane: when you break down the numbers on independents, actually they identify one way or another with one party. not quite as free swinging as the term implies.

Patrick: echo that.

Bob Kurtick: can the left and right come together against Washington? Why are mainstream National Review types supporting warrantless wiretapping, instead of Ron Paul?

Micah: we're not going to resolve partisan issues here. how process is changing and opening up. strange bedfellows.

Jane: natural online constituencies are those against DC (from left and right). the more the blogosphere aligns with DC.


Jane Hamsher (

started with scooter libby trial
came of age when you could build a community based on opposition to george bush. fragmented with the last election.
DNC rules and by-laws committee. 1.5 million views of video of a DNC protestor. networks never covered it. they used my youtube eventually. people decided what would be news, not the networks.
we're under increasing pressure from blogs like swampland and abc news, which have learned that people want an interactive space.
in the old world, a news story that doesn't make any sense might only get 2 letters to the editor.
journalists were initially scared about blogging, but now they're happy because their jobs are being saved.
what can we do that swampland can't?
we can recontextualize the media narrative. if there's a narrative that says, don't talk about the war, then we can challenge that. which is what we did in the lieberman, ned lamont race. liberated democratic candidates to the idea that they can run as an anti-war candidate and win, and it was liberal blogs who pushed this idea.
we did an ad that we can adapt for different races. not just a community, not just commentary, but a way to change something.
we were able to flip 4 out of five votes.
liberal blogosphere is white, male, in terms of readership. tend to be old. blog-age reader is between 40 and 60 years old. affluent (100-150K/year). working to broaden that coalition. allied with immigrant groups.
steny hoyer -- fisa ads.allied with
will we lose our audience with new elections? blue dog dems in the center control the house right now, getting K street money. they're open to the highest bidder.
ActBlue -- online clearinghouse for Democratic Action. (raised 300,000 in 72 hours)
Obama campaign has shown people about the possibilities of changing the political system online.
Obama 55 million dollars in March, without attending one fundraiser.


Anthony Hamelle (linkfluence)

New geography, virtual geography of politics on the internet. (linkfluence is a research institute specializing in the social influence of the web) map of the political blogosphere

In the old days, just look at crowds rallying around the politicians. With the internet, how do you grasp influence?

Web territories -- conservative websites have 51% of linkfluence, progressives have 49%

where are the most active conversations? this tool allows you to see this around specific issues.

last december 2007, only barack obama had influence. now all of the candidates, esp. bo and john mccain.

could be useful for politicians, to understand trends, and even specific websites, and perhaps for issue campaigns, but not sure just how useful.


Zephyr Teachout (Dean '04 campaign)

two different kinds of innovations. two different ways of valuing. industrial way, and democratic way of talking aobut internet politics.

both languages are very american. we're used to the syntax of each of them. in the industrial mode, we praise mass efficiency, the clever way in which resources are extracted and used. the awe that we talk about has to do with this. 1 million users on 5 million views of a youtube video.

in the democratic mode, we're not interested in distributing tasks, but power. not volunteerism, but citizenship. not mobilization but organization. using internet to bring power back to people.

i sense the same aw when 10,000 phone calls are made using the internet.

what does this look like, to build architectures where people actually have power?

the model of american associations. de tocqueville. not only industrial associations, but 1000 other kinds.

as of 1955, 5% of americans were presidents of their local associations.

We are now in one of the biggest changes in mass transportation. If this were 80 years, there would be small groups lobbying around mass transportation. If we had foreclosures like this 90 years ago, we would see 1000 groups around the country organizing in different ways.

Now this is even more possible. One standard to measure -- how many associations are there? Not how many people have contributed? How many people have the knowledge to form a group?

As you hear about all the innovations, look at them through this light. Is it an "industrial" innovation, or a "citizenship" one. is power being distributed, or tasked.

Whitman poem -


Personal Democracy Forum 2008

I'll be posting highlights from this conference today and tomorrow, live from Rose Hall at the Lincoln Center.

There are some live broadcasts from the website, and they're going be giving away some of the Nokia phones that allow for live broadcasting by citizen journalists!

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