Tuesday :: Aug 5, 2003

How Can the Blogosphere Reach Beyond the Media to Democrats?


by Steve

MattS, in a post to the Kerry thread below, apprises us of an effort he is working on to convince Democractic officeholders that the blogosphere can be developed into an alternate media and communications structure to reach the base and others who have turned off politics. MattS’s post, to wit, was:

There's a high-level Democratic congressperson interested in how blogging can reach out to a national constituency 'beyond the beltway', and I want to get your feedback on what kinds of recommendations I should make. How can our party use blogging and online tools to engage and strengthen our collective engagement with Democratic principles?

This is a really exciting time. Because reasonable people seem to be out of power everywhere, we have nothing to lose anymore. Everything's on the table, and it's clear that we must simply decapitate the old media influence peddlers who have clearly failed, and construct the networks of influence that will bring back engagement and integrity to our political system.

The blogosphere will be key to that restoration. And the insiders are listening. Please make your suggestions as practical as possible.

Matt brings up a spot-on point that the current media needs to be decapitated, or at least convinced that they have left behind most of their audience. Anyone who watches the cable chatfests or the weekend interview programs and has to put up with GOP ass-kisser Tim Russert or in-over-his-head Georgie knows that these guys are more interested in maintaining access than they are in staying in touch with real people and their opinions.

The ratings at MSNBC after Donohue was dumped went down. Nutcase intern-killer Joe Scarborough has never pulled the ratings that Donohue did, even with Phil's watered down show. Yet the GE/GOP hacks running NBC ordered Donohue canned in the run-up to the war. And we already know how wise their decision was to bring aboard lunatic Michael Savage. Until the media types are convinced that the Fox News model employed by CNN, MSNBC, several major dailies, and the tabloids are no longer reaching a broad section of people and are in fact chasing the same section of the audience, they will keep peddling their corporate conservative tripe.

A longer-term strategy for dealing with this is being pursued by Al Gore, who is in discussions with several behind-the-scenes folks to develop a new TV/media operation that would run contrary to the Fox model from the center-left. But this will not be in place anytime soon, and will have no impact on the election next year. A short term strategy of convincing the national party and officeholders of the wisdom of setting up alternate sources of communication and information distribution, both as a means of reaching and comunicating with constituents and keeping the media accountable for playing it fair is what is needed now. The great work that many bloggers like Kos and others have done, and the hard work that Mary and many of you are doing to implement the TruthCorps concept will pay dividends now. And anyone who doubts the immediate effectiveness of the internet and blogs as a source of energy, organization, and communications savvy need look no further than the Dean campaign.

So, to help MattS out in his dealings with Democratic officeholders who are open to the idea of alternate communication tools like the blogosphere as a way to reach Democrats, please post some of your thoughts on how this could work and should be structured.

It doesn't take much to see that it is possible to set up a universe between the campaigns, the blogs, the party, and special projects like TruthCorp ideas to run parallel to the existing slanted media as a communications structure, one that can provide not only news and contact information, but allow interaction with politicians and the media. Once the media barons realize that they are being ignored and left behind by a large segment of the educated voting public, they too will change what they are peddling.

Steve :: 10:05 AM :: Comments (19) :: Digg It!