Rockin' the Geek Casbah: JRE Buzz (11)
It is hard to believe the buzz could get any more strong and loud about John Edwards. But it happened today at Gnomedex. I watched the live stream and it was an experience to behold, just like my conversation with JRE the other day. (photo credit: laniov)
Contrary to what many Gnomes said they wanted--which was more about the Senator's experience with technology, (which is what I had read and told him--but also told him that it would be best if his format was similar to Elizabeth's at PDF for a give and take), John Edwards decided to turn the tables. He came to learn from them, and amazingly, was able to get the audience to speak about their issues. It's your platform, he said. He also got them to laugh at themselves and at him. I don't think I've ever seen him laugh as much in public before, which was great.
The progressives in the crowd were the most outspoken, if downright, blunt, about their views related to politics and technology. One man, who claimed to be a 3rd generation Red diaper baby (JRE: what is that, and my question too)--meaning a communist connotation for those who were communist sympathizers, wanted a politician with balls or for some politican to grow some balls. JRE: Now don't hold back--laughter from the audience (and me both). (photo credit: Dan DeLong/Seattle Post-Intelligencer)
It lead to the issue Net Neutrality (or network discrimination, as an about.com blogger wrote), as it was a big concern with this crowd. JRE said for selfish reasons, he supported Net Neutrality, but he also wanted more transparency; less top-down communication. But he also thought Democrats needed backbone and courage. Why not say, we support universal healthcare, not meely-mouth answers such as "more access" or more affordable healthcare. I think he was making some statements pointed at HR Clinton and Kerry, just a little.
Some were tired of politicans who come across as fake, and wondered why they spoon fed their messages. Some wanted more technology outreach via SMS. JRE was able to plug in that OAC was doing that now, as of yesterday. Some wanted to know what the new technology would be in the future to communicate. JRE: I don't know. You tell me.
Lots on framing issues and language. I will refer you to this digest by Iddybud:
Regarding a war with language: Republicans have used langusage effectively to get the policy they want. Terrorism terms have been employed to make spying on citizens look proper and legal. Democrats need to work on their own language, said an audience member. He commented that even the term "net neutrality" is rather ineffective in getting the average American to understand the issues at hand. Senator Edwards says language does matter, although his own personal focus is talking straight off the cuff and doing his job of deciding and communicating which way he thinks the country should go. He thinks the actual presidential elections are different from Washington D.C.'s everyday national debate when it comes to the use of language. Integrity, character, and trust in leadership are the factors that he believes are important to most people when it comes time to choose a president. More than language, he thinks the Democrats' problem is worrying too much about being "moderate." Language counts, but he believes that voters' belief and trust in the integrity and character of the candidate is what drives presidential elections.
One Gnome suggested giving a free seat on each campaign trail bus for a citizen journalist, and to persuade the other side to do so as well. I agree with JRE: good idea.
My favorite part --the closing by JRE: I want the country to know who I really am, not the plastic doll version who looks perfect all of the time, but I want you to actually see who I am... Because I think if you see who I am, and it takes a lot of confidence, you'll decide I am somebody..cou.. should become your president.
Last thing he says: big priority for me to be able to be here with you. I wanted to hear what you all are saying. I also hope...to Help me and others open up this process, make it not-top-down and democratize this democracy we supposed to be living in.
That's as close to announcing a run as JRE gets.
Update, July 1st...This just in ..
Gnomedex: Interview with Ryan Montoya, Sen. John Edwards' tech advisor (by Dan Farber)
Ryan Montoya spent the last presidential campaign traveling the country with Elizabeth Edwards as she campaigned for her husband. Now the political consultant is helping Senator John Edwards, who seems to be campaigning for the 2008 presidential election, as a technical advisor. He has been involved in Edwards' One America Committee, which has an extensive Web site that included blogs, chat, video and offers updates from the Senator and Mrs. Edwards via mobile phones. I caught up with Montoya at Gnomedex, where Senator Edwards held court for an hour. We talked about how blogging and the Internet are changing the dynamics of campaigning beyond where the Howard Dean campaign took it in the lead up to the 2004 elections. The video interview is in two parts… LINK
Ryan rocks...he's da' man along with "the Man"..from Robbins.
Between the Lines (zdnet)
Iddybud's Diary on OAC blog
Mbair at Daily Kos
New Media Musings
OAC blog (much of it live blogging) about Gnomedex speech
Raines live blogging post at Daily Kos
hat-tip: Machka from OAC blog
Tins: Rick Klau's Blog
Flickr fotos by Laughing Squid
Mbair101's videos on Youtube
Web 2.0 Explorer Blog
Update: July 1: I've been asked if the "bracelet" Edwards is wearing is the one I gave him. What folks mean is the white band on his left wrist (that you see in the pics and videos) that reads "Make Poverty History." I think it is, but I know he's had another one given to him before.
Tags: JRE, John Edwards, Gnomedex 6.0, One America Committee, Ryan Montoya