Presidential Debate Cranks Up Twitter Stats

No surprise here, but the recent debate means more Twitter activity. Twitter reports that they had a 160% tweet increase compared to the same time the previous week, and that the daily update was up 18.5%. More stats in the Twitter blog post. The same also tells us that they’re polishing the Election page we’ve mentioned previously.

Wired’s Epicenter blog gets to wrap this up:

Predictions for Thursday’s VP debate? Sarah Palin tweets crash the site in record time.

Blogs About Sarah Palin: Who’s For Her, Who’s Against?

Sarah Palin BlogPulse Popularity

Sarah Palin is the first woman ever to run on the U.S. Republican party presidential ticket. If Americans elect John McCain on November 4, Mrs. Palin will be the first female Vice President of the United States.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, both BlogPulse and Google Trends show more – a lot more – discussion in the blogosphere about Palin than about either Obama or McCain (see charts after the jump).

But what are the underlying causes for all the Palin talk? Why the fuss?

Is it because blogs may actually be responsible for John McCain’s selection of Palin as his running mate?

Is it because Palin came seemingly out of nowhere to get picked ahead of several other contenders?

Or is it just because she’s a woman? [Read more…]

Rosanne Cash to John McCain: Back Off!

Rosanne Cash, the daughter of country musician Johnny Cash, uses her blog to tell John McCain to back off on using her fathers name to bolster the Republican presidential campaign:

It is unfair and presumptuous to use him to bolster any platform. I would ask that my father not be co-opted in this election for either side, since he is clearly not here to defend or state his own allegiance.

Naturally, this got quite some coverage in the press. On a slightly different note, I recommend getting the later albums by Johnny Cash in particular, his dark and then-wavering voice is really powerful.

Will 2008 be the year of the political blogger?

With a US Presidential Election this fall, along with 1/3rd of the Senate up for re-election, and the entire House of Representatives, could 2008 truly be the year of the political blogger?

The New York Times certainly thinks so:

Beginning Monday, hundreds of bloggers will descend on Denver to see Barack Obama accept his party’s nomination. Next week, hundreds more will travel to St. Paul to witness John McCain’s acceptance speech at the Republican National Convention. But now these online partisans, many of whom are self-financed, must contend with all the logistical and financial hurdles just to get there — not to mention the party politics happening behind the scenes.

This year, both parties understand the need to have greater numbers of bloggers attend. While many Americans may watch only prime-time television broadcasts of the convention speeches, party officials also recognize the ability of bloggers to deliver minute-by-minute coverage of each day’s events to a niche online audience.

To put this into perspective, the 2004 DNC in Boston credentialed only around twelve bloggers. This year, hundreds of bloggers have been credentialed at both convention. The micro-coverage from the smaller blogs and in-depth coverage provided by the larger blogs is going to elevate the artform of political blogging to a whole new level.

I can’t wait to watch..

I’m still waiting for my Obama text message

Much was made of the Obama campaign’s plan to release the name of their VP nominee via text message before the mainstream media published the message.

That’s why, of course, I was reading about the nomination of Joe Biden as Obama’s Vice Presidential candidate on CNN and long before the text message was sent out from the Obama campaign at 3:00am.

The Washington Post reports the issue:

It was the text message read round the country — for those who got it.

Many of those who signed up to receive a text alerting them of Sen. Barack Obama’s vice presidential selection had to wait minutes, if not hours, to learn that Sen. Joseph R. Biden Jr. was the pick. The problem was most likely a scaling issue, mobile experts said, with carriers’ messaging systems overwhelmed by the number of people receiving the text.

“It was one message that had to reach any number of devices,” said Stephanie Vinge-Walsh of Sprint Nextel. She added that traffic on Sprint’s short code for the Obama campaign — 62262, which spells O-B-A-M-A on cellphone keypads — rose more than 250 percent within an hour of the announcement.

The message was sent out at 3am, at least 5-6 hours after the mainstream media had already published the message. And – 2 days later – I’m still waiting on my message to arrive….

Google will provide services for bloggers at both political conventions

Google will be providing significant support to bloggers at the upcoming DNC and RNC conventions over the next few weeks, according to an article in the Wall Street Journal:

Google Inc. will help set up a two-story, 8,000 square-foot headquarters for hundreds of bloggers descending on the Democratic convention in Denver next week, and it will offer similar services at the Republican convention in September, as new media gain influence in politics.

Four years ago, Google wasn’t a significant presence at the Democratic and Republican conventions. Its high-profile presence at both conventions this year mirrors the growth of new media, which will provide their takes on events and compete with established media companies via Google’s YouTube video site and other social-media outlets.

In 2004, I was in Boston during the Democratic National Convention, and while bloggers were given press access to the event, they certainly did not receive support on a scale such as this. This is a significant step towards providing bloggers with a more equal playing field with mainstream media.

Why Bloggers Don’t Care About The Russian/Georgian Conflict

There are a lot of reasons most tech/web 2.0 bloggers don’t cover international crisis. Many of them are to buried in there own startups to notice a conflict half way across the globe.

Secondarily it doesn’t have much influence on things that are far more important here at home. Like the price of oil at the pump, the mortgage crisis, or a new iP…

Yep it is an illegal crisis. But when its far easier to sit back and enjoy the Olympics and blog about that. Why in the world would bloggers care to shed some outcry over a bully invading another country illegally, even if they were provoked.

Thirdly, The US will never get into a massive conflict with Russia especially when Russia clearly wants Georgian Petrol Access I mean seriously what Russia is doing merely parallels what we did in Iraq. So it is kind of hypocritical for the US to criticize Russia when we still have a bundle of peace loving troops on the ground in someone else´s backyard.

BlogCatalog Launches Political Blogging Channel

BlogCatalog, the self-proclaimed ‘fastest-growing social network for bloggers,’ has launched a new Political Channel, hoping to engage millions of members in the political process.

“As we approach the Democratic and Republican conventions, BlogCatalog’s Political Channel will serve as a benchmark of what is on the minds of mainstream political bloggers across America,” stated Tony Berkman, BlogCatalog CEO. “With almost 5,000 political bloggers and 114,000 non-political bloggers already part of the BlogCatalog conversational ecosystem, BlogCatalog is the Internet’s leading destination for mainstream political bloggers to have their political voices heard, engage in the political debate, increase their blog’s exposure, and participate in lively discussion.”

New political channel features include:

– discussion area
– highlighted posts
– political social search
– political groups
– open call for writers

All bloggers listed in BlogCatalog are opt-in and must pass a 5-step qualifying process, reviewed by a BlogCatalog Analyst.

John McCain To Followers: Its Time To Troll The Blogosphere!

Ironically, just when this author started to warm up to the Maverick (for entering into hostile territory), it looks as if they are encouraging their followers to post “positive thoughts” or at least actively defend McCain’s name in the comment section, an item that may not please many political (and non-political) blogs.

( Help spread the word about John McCain on news and blog sites. Your efforts to help get the message out about John McCain’s policies and plan for the future is one of the most valuable things you can do for this campaign. You know why John McCain should be the next President of the United States and we need you to tell others why.

Select from the numerous web, blog and news sites listed here, go there, and make your opinions supporting John McCain known. Once you’ve commented on a post, video or news story, report the details of your comment by clicking the button below. After your comments are verified, you will be awarded points through the McCain Online Action Center.

It’s not the fact that John McCain is encouraging followers to comment upon blogs/news sites that is disturbing. After all, its probably wise to have a volunteer army defending ones own name.

Its the part where users have to report back to headquarters, as if its some intelligence agency (like the KGB or CIA).

If McCain wants to be successful online (as well as off) then he should encourage passionate followers to simply voice their opinion without the need to receive a “pat on the head” by reporting their daily good deed.

Otherwise he just might find himself fighting the blogosphere once again.

(Hat Tip: Hot Air)

Bloggers Can Attend the Democratic National Convention. Slots Still Open!

This summer’s Democratic National Convention, slated for late August, will allow YOU to attend. OK, maybe not YOU. But if you are a political blogger,there is a fighting chance you could make the guest list.

The convention committee’s CEO, Leah Daughtry, has announced unprecedented access to select bloggers.

Interested? Fill out this application form. Hurry! The deadline is April 15.

The DNC is allowing one blogger to sit with each state’s delegation.

“When our nominee for president of the United States takes the stage, members of the DemConvention State Blogger Corps will witness this historic moment from the best seats in the house, and in turn, be able to offer their dedicated readers back home a first-hand account,” says Daughtry.

Applications have been accepted since early this year. However, certain positions (which have not been revealed) only have one or two candidates.

To gain entrance, your blog must be at least six months old with at least 120 political posts. You also must provide some basic traffic information.