Tag Archives: New York Times

The Long Tail of Politics: social media and the Tea Party movement

5 Nov

 

Will the Tea Party mean the end of the party in Washington?

 

America has swerved rightwards.

Energised by the Tea Party movement, the Republicans this week enacted a spectacular revenge on the governing Democrats in the mid-term elections, overturning at least 60 seats in Congress.

Many will explain this away by citing disaffection with the ‘slow progress’ of President Barack Obama’s reforms.

But something less obvious was also at play.

Before we go any further, let me be clear: I am not seeking to express any political view or affiliation here. This is a media blog – and I want to explore the story of how American conservatives have seemingly stolen a digital march on the supposedly tech-savvy Democrats to organise, spread ideas and win hearts and minds. Continue reading

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The Social Network: a defamatory revisionist fantasy

20 Oct



Jessie Eisenberg in The Social Network

Old media sets the entry bar high.

To partake in, say, the Hollywood film industry, you’ll need equipment – cameras, mobile cabins, mirrors with lights around the edges and hotdogs.

You’ll need an international film production and distribution company – like, say, Columbia Pictures – as well as publicists, runners, voice coaches and drivers.

You’ll need very famous, very highly-paid, very pampered stars. People like, say, Justin Timberlake.

How it must irk those accomplished and immaculately-connected producers, directors, script writers and actors that anyone can now do this sort of thing for the price of a laptop, a camcorder and a tank of petrol. Continue reading

The ROI of social media

16 Sep

All over the world, corporate bean counters are wielding their scythes and salami-slicers as they settle down to plan next year’s budgets.

“Whooops, there goes the fleet of company cars – how careless of me! Oh dear, now I’ve fumbled the training programme, the PR agency and the company secretary. Butter fingers!”

At the same time, hapless marketers are begging their cantankerous CEOs for resources for social media programmes.

In the board rooms high above Wall Street and the City of London, something resembling the famous scene from Oliver Twist must be playing out many times a day.

“More? You want MORE?!?” Continue reading

Why we no longer need paper

1 Sep

What have Seth Godin, Laura Lippman, the Huffington Post and the Oxford English Dictionary got in common?

They say it’s not a crime to make a mistake.

Clearly that’s not always the case and so I prefer the faithful bed fellow of that phrase: “The real crime is the failure to learn from ones mistakes”.

Thus it was with an approving nod that I read at the weekend that the venerable Oxford Online Dictionary had announced its next edition might only be available online.

The current (and second) edition of the dictionary – 20 hefty volumes costing £750 ($1,165) – has been sold around 30,000 times since publication in 1989, mostly to obsessive bibliophiles and weird collectors.

The next edition will likely be read by a great many more people and will not be made of dead trees. In fact, the current digital version is already enjoying two million visits a month. Continue reading

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