The Obama for America campaign tried something new to achieve an old goal:  sign up and you would get a text message on Saturday morning (apparently very early Saturday morning) announcing his choice for VP.  It’s a novel idea, and a clever one.  Yes, getting a text message from Barack Obama–or at least from his campaign–is exciting.  A recipient can feel engaged, however superficially.  But the Obama campaign got something in return:  millions of contacts.  Contacts donate time, money, and word-of-mouth support.  It’s worth discussing if this is a trick that will work next time.

Meanwhile, Joe Biden sent an email with an embedded video to those contacts over the weekend (make sure you have the proper plug-ins).  CNN and iReport have teamed up with Digg to get viewers’ questions answered by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA).  All of these tactics are innovative and reflective of the new ways people communicate.  But are we missing the bigger slice of the interested public–namely, those of us who are politically engaged, but perhaps not technologically engaged?


Ah, a real-time update:  Austin Esposito, the son of Senator Claire McCaskill (D-MO) is speaking at the Democratic National Convention (which I am streaming, despite my consistent inability to have the proper plug-ins), and he’s just exhorted the viewers to stay engaged by–oh, take a guess–texting the message “CHANGE” to 62262.  [Posted by Amanda Clemens]

Originally posted August 25, 2008 at PolicyByBlog

Leave a Reply