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« Talking about religion | Main | The mighty, fallen »

Feb 13, 2007


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sean coon

here's an idea for all political candidates re: blogging -- don't hire other people to blog for your campaign.

start your own blog and post when you have the time. forget the shiny, shiny presentation and just speak from your heart. release policy ideas into the ether. create trust by pointing your readers to good ideas of other smart people, no matter their political affiliation. and most importantly, build community (and potential voters) by commenting on your own posts.

who is advising these folks on how to use the web?


Yes Sean, hiring a blogger to fill in the gaps or provide more "coverage" than a candidate might be able to makes sense, but hiring a blogger in lieu of one's first-person blogging seems kind of antithetical to the whole thing.

Ed Cone

Any campaign for an office beyond the local level is going to need bloggers beyond the candidate if it's going to offer meaningful coverage of events, policies, etc.

That said, I recommend the Zack Exley piece I linked recently re the need for candidate ownership of online strategy.

And as this fiasco makes clear, bloggers may bring baggage with them, so it's wise to plan for that reality.

sean coon

"Any campaign for an office beyond the local level is going to need bloggers beyond the candidate if it's going to offer meaningful coverage of events, policies, etc."

Sure, but why do you feel that "beyond the candidate" bloggers need to be hired by the campaign itself? (if that is what you feel, I don't have time to hunt down the link you mention).

Hundreds, if not thousands of bloggers will dissect and debate policy, cover events, ask tough questions, link back, etc. if Edwards were to blog for himself no more than even once every handful of days.

A presidential candidate who blogged for him/herself could point to and blogroll people who both themselves and their campaign felt engaged in honest debate of the issues. That type of authentic engagement and transparency would rocket the candidate to the A-list in just a few days time and begin to corral community on a number of fronts -- from supporters to challengers on both sides of the aisle.

Ed Cone

I don't think it's either/or, inside or outside the campaign.

A vibrant community of independent and loosely joined bloggers is a good thing.

But campaigns also need to push information out on their own timetable, respond to news, issue statements, coordinate volunteeers, etc, and a staff blog is a good way of doing those things.

sean coon

agreed. but campaigns don't need seasoned, opinionated bloggers to fill the rank of staff blogger.

a better approach would be to hire a seasoned blogger to run a few day long workshop on the ins and outs of blogging, tagging, community building, etc., so that staff members can be proficient with the technology.

keep the "personalities" out of the official mix and empower the candidate to bring such transparency to the table on their own terms.

Ed Cone

Makes sense. Let the personalities emerge from within the campaign.

sean coon

yeah, it seems to be an obvious approach. if super-busy people like zuckerman, winer, searls, cuban, calacanis, etc. can manage their day to day business *and* their projection of opinion and position into the ether, why couldn't a (prospective) politician?

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