Saturday, May 26, 2007

Old Media Noticing New Media In Georgia Politics

(This post cross-posted at Peach Pundit too.)

With the 10th Congressional being one of the few political shows in town, in the country for that matter, won’t be long before Big Media notices all our Little Media efforts here in Georgia, just as the Athens Banner-Herald has. Especially if Marlow makes it to a runoff on June 19th. Then the big guys will be all over us, trust me, because we can then, and only then, say that New Media is likely impacting the political process in the Peach State. Likely.

I caution anyone to use extreme caution when believing a word out of a political advisor’s mouth right now about new media. Not only do they tend not have a clue about new media as a whole, they don’t have a clue about the impact of new media on voter behavior. So when people make statements like this from the OnlineAthens story:
Unless a (newspaper) story’s written about it, the people viewing it (an online video) probably know how they’re going to vote anyway,” (Emil) Runge said.

…trust that they’re pulling statements out of their as* book of facts.

No one, at this point in time, has a clue whether a “traditional” print story about a YouTube video will impact voter behavior or not. Just as no one has a clue whether watching a YouTube video will translate into feet to the polls. There simply is no data right now to support any kind of “new media” political reality.

Let’s hope that some of our fine Georgia (national?) pollsters will seize the momentum of this special election on June 19th to get out there and gather us up some good, hard data on whether or not “new media” influenced not only:

a.) how people voted.
b.) But also did new kinds of media get folks off their butts and actually out of the house to vote at all?

In the meantime, don’t believe any hype coming from “traditional” campaigns on any side about what the Internet vs. traditional media will or will not do for them. They simply don’t know. Anyone trying to dazzle you with statements about the impact of any kind of media on politics right now is simply flying by the seat of their (old media advice) pants.

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