I have to re-post a note written by Tim Manners, editor of

“Thomas Jefferson used newspapers to win the presidency, FDR used radio to change the way he governed, JFK was the first president to understand television and Howard Dean saw the value of the web for raising money,” says Ranjit Mathoda in a New York Times piece by David Carr (11/10/08). “But Barack Obama understood that you could use the web to lower the cost of building a political brand, create a sense of connection and engagement, and dispense with the command and control method of governing to allow people to self-organize to do the work.”
The President-elect apparently intends to bring his networked base with him to the White House: “His e-mail message to supporters on Tuesday night included the line, ‘We have a lot of work to do to get our country back on track, and I’ll be in touch soon about what comes next.” Already, the Obama administration has set up a website,, as a “digital gateway for the transition.” The new President arrives with “not just a political base, but a database, millions of names of supporters who can be engaged almost instantly.” Most significant, Barack Obama built his network without the help of a political party.
David Carr points out that “while many people think that President-elect Obama is a gift to the Democratic Party, he could actually hasten its demise. Political parties supply brand, ground troops, money and relationships, all things that Mr. Obama already owns.” As Andrew Rasiej, of the Personal Democracy Forum observes: “Any politician who fails to recognize that we are in a post-party era with a new political ecology in which connecting like minds and forming a movement is much easier will not be around for long … Yes, we have met Big Brother, the one who is always watching. And Big Brother is us.”

The full New York Times article is here. Great read!

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