Analysis of blogs' influence on elections

Typical of blogs, there’s no agreement on just how influential, or not, blogs are when it comes to elections. However, what people do seem to agree with is that the Internet is playing more and more of a role in elections as a news provider.

From the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel:

What started as an online political counterculture of a few activists is growing into a major force in American elections. Campaigns reach out to bloggers to feed content; online media report the ins and outs of campaigns; and candidates frequently update their own Web sites to make them must-reads for loyal supporters.

“There’s just an explosion of content out there that’s campaign-related,” Tom Bevan, co-founder and executive editor of RealClearPolitics.com, said Thursday during a conference on how the Internet will affect candidates and media coverage in the 2008 presidential campaign.

The Online News Association and WisPolitics.com sponsored the conference.

Political Blogging 2.0?

2 thoughts on “Analysis of blogs' influence on elections

  1. I agree with the last line for sure – move the people who move the voters. But I still take myself as an example. I migrated to the blogs only after I started blogging myself. Then, i learned about how much information was out there. So, I think that, if people – voters – who never before thought of the Internet as a place to gather information and try out their ideas, get lured into trying out the Internet as a place to find debate and information, then you might see more of an influence among the latter group. Maybe. It’s still in a very embryonic stage, yes?

  2. Interesting topic. There are two kinds of voters. There is a small percentage who follow this stuff all the time, who are obsessed by politics, and who care passionately about political issues. Then there are the average voters who aren’t nearly as involved in the process as the first group. The existence of these two groups, by the way, are way political consultants exist. Think of them as interperters explaining the candidates, who are from the first group, to the second group, which are most voters, and vice versa. Now, I don’t think that the internet is a good way for candidates and activists to influence on a sustained basis the second group, but it is a great way to communicate and work with the first group. What the internet does is allow candidates and campaigns to communicate with activists for a fraction of the cost and time that more traditional methods of communication take. Because of that, it will have a big influence on campaigns, but not necessarily in terms of moving voters. Rather, it will move the people who will help move the voters.

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