20 March 2007

Hillary Clinton, 198.... err... 2008

This is a clever mashup of the famous Apple "1984" television ad with the Hillary Clinton campaign "conversation" speech. Obviously done by an Obama supporter, it demonstrates the power of cultural zeitgeist and deep cultural references, the art of mashup (which, when used purposefully in this way, is a latter-day form of Menippean satire), and the brilliance of YouTube's dissemination model for reach.

Traditional broadcast television (by which I mean, including cable and satellite) will remain important among the pantheon of partisan political influencers... at least for now. But to reach the growing demographic of UCaPP-native voters, many of whom will be eligible to vote for the first time in the coming elections (both in the U.S. and here in Canada), the effects of social network political suasion must be fully understood. It means that the central party office cedes control to its supporters in order to extend its reach to those who have traditionally been out of reach. YouTube, blogs, Facebook and the rest are not merely ways of broadcasting (and being on) message. Rather they are places in which language and meaning translation occur - from parents' politics to "our" politics. It's an important transition - as important as the turning point of the famous Kennedy-Nixon debate was in cementing television's role in broadcast politics.

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