Saturday, January 27, 2007

The blog difference between Richardson and Edwards (its local)

Ken and I are fighting the good fight (seemingly about over now) over at Scoble's blog about why our guy is just as good, or even better, than John Edwards regarding the blogs.

I've made the point that not only are Richardson's supporters the only group using an independent tool to organize themselves in the real world, but that Richardson has met with bloggers in Iowa, South Carolina and Washington.

The main difference between Edwards (especially his blog powered tour a few weeks ago) and Richardson is that one has focussed on the national blogosphere, while the other has focussed on smaller, regional blog networks. Edwards is the national guy, Richardson has focussed his attention on the regional blogosphere.

This may seem like a difference in time and money, that Richardson can only attract small fish, but the three instances above were when he was acting as chair of the Democratic Governors Association, when focusing locally was important. It also shows a different understanding of why blogs and the netroots are important.

Matt Stoller on the local blogosphere (and here):
You'll notice that on the netroots page almost every candidate has a local blog or set of blogs that are covering the race. That's because it's the local bloggers that are going to keep tabs on the races and the campaigns, and create the buzz and the excitement necessary to win. Local blogs and netroots communities don't just channel money, they channel volunteers, energy, intelligence, and news coverage. And sometimes, lightning strikes. A really effective local blog can shape a race the way the Ohio 2nd blog shaped the Hackett special election.
At least in how Richardson has approached the netroots, he seems to understand that local matters. It doesn't matter really what national bloggers pay attention to you, it matters what the bloggers are getting locally.

Richardson's "for governor" site last year also kind of proves this point. "The Plaza," (which you can't see anymore, was a scoop based community site. Open diaries, the whole schmere. I'm pretty sure it was the first open community blog in New Mexico.

His upbringing as a politician, which has included thousands of local town hall meetings and regular "open door" sessions, extends this point. I've said that Richardson was a blogger before AOL was around. By that, I mean, he has had the kind of open, up front, conversations that bloggers want, without actually blogging himself.

1 comment:

Ken Camp said...

You should post this over at AFR, it's very well-written and hits it right on the head.

I'm going to link to it at WFR.