Echo Chamber Project Vlog Episode 2: Media & Politics
Submitted by kentbye on Fri, 2005-08-19 13:30. Collaboration | Decentralization | Journalism | New Media | Open Source | Politics | Vlog
(5:08 minutes / 12.6 MB)
Here is the second Echo Chamber Project video blog entry
Description: Technology is transforming media & politics, and large-scale collaborative media can provide some insights into grassroots leadership and bottom-up democracy.
(5:08 minutes / 12.6 MB)
Listed below is a full transcript of this video with additional links...
[UPDATE: November 2, 2005] The Rasiej campaign was never able to provide the necessary footage for this proposed remix. More details here.
This video blog episode will be one of the first citizen videojournalism reports to be remixed by a political campaign. This could provide a viable model for how traditionally top-down driven political campaigns could release some control over their communications strategy, and facilitate collaboration with citizens and issue-based advocates for talking about the niche concerns of constituents.
Vlogger and citizen journalist Ryanne Hodson will be gathering sound bites from Andrew Rasiej's campaign for Public Advocate in New York City, and then remixing them with sound bites from this Echo Chamber Project vlog episode in order to create a message that is unique to their campaign.
Both entries discuss how technology is changing media and politics, and how the Internet could faciliate a true grassroots, bottom-up democracy like we've never seen before.
Here is the pitch that I sent to the Rasiej campaign in order to open source the National aspects of their local campaign.
I framed the potential vlog remix as a way to "catalyze and energize a National-to-Local, peer-to-peer communications strategy" by having bloggers to tell NYC Democrats to know for Rasiej on September 13th.
In other words, since the Rasiej campaign has been so focused on the local Get Out the Vote efforts, then they didn't have time to connect the dots for what Rasiej's vision means for grassroots democracy and how political parties could use technology in new and innovative ways. Since I had already made this argument in this vlog entry, then I suggested that we collaborate on getting this message out there by open sourcing his national campaign strategy.
New York City also has a lot of political and cultural power, and if Rasiej is elected and his vision for Universal municipal Wi-Fi is implemented, then could set a trend for other cities to follow.
Here is a link to Rasiej's remixed video blog entry (Remix Still in Production).
It's nice to have the opportunity to put some of this theory into action for what is possible with using citizen journalism as a way to "open source" political campaigns. It is also opening more doors and paving the road for more doing collaborative media.
The Echo Chamber Project has more plans for how to take this idea to the next level by creating the tools to make large-scale collaborative media possible.
I am still searching for potential funders and computer programmers, so please leave a comment below if you're interested in getting more involved.
| Kent Bye (EchoChamberProject.com): I wanted to talk a bit about the intersection between media and politics for a couple of reasons. Collaborative media can provide a lot insights into grassroots activism and bottom-up democracy. The Echo Chamber Project is also developing a lot of the open source tools for collaborative media that could also be used for political campaigns in the next election cycle. So here are some insights from the Personal Democracy Forum.
[Intro Music Cue from Telekinetic Soulmate "Searching" courtesy of Defective Records]
|Chris Nolan ("Politics from Left to Right" Blog): Back five / ten years ago, the people at Wired Magazine used to say, "The Internet changes everything." They were right. We're just getting -- I mean, outside of Silicon Valley -- people are just beginning to understand just how dramatic and how important those changes are.|
|Jeff Jarvis (BuzzMachine.com): If you give the people control of media, they will take it. If you don't give them control, you will loose them. And I think we have to look not just at media where this is occurring, but also in marketing and in politics. I don't think here at the Personal Democracy Forum we've yet seen nearly the endgame of the people taking over their political process, and I do believe that will happen.|
|Doc Searls (Doc Searls Weblog): Sooner or later, the connected electorate essentially imposes Democracy back on government in a way we've never seen before. So I think five years from now what we're going to see is something that's much more like democracy than we've seen in the history of the Republic.|
|Kent Bye: It's safe to assume that the Internet will continue to change the way that we interact with media and politics. One of the founders of Meetup.com talks about the challenges of coordinating large-scale collaboration.|
|Scott Heiferman (Co-Founder/CEO Meetup.com): How do organizations find that balance between top-down and bottom-up? How is that you can both give people direction and leadership while at the same time giving people enough freedom to truly have a grassroots feel? Not just look grassroots, but authentically be grassroots. Not just sort of look bottom-up, but authentically be bottom-up.|
|Markos Moulitsas (DailyKos.com): Now people want you to be proactive. They want you to be innovative. They want you to really look for solutions to problems. They don't want you to just follow orders. Yet we have a media environment and a political environment that are still very top-bottom driven. They still expect to issue proclamations and edicts and have people follow those. It's not like that any more. And I think that what we're seeing with the blogs is a creation of this new citizen's movement to take over things -- like I said -- politics, journalism and activism.|
|Mindy Finn (Republican National Committee eCampaign): We're really tasked with online strategy. Leveraging the web and new media to help advance the committee's goals at all levels. For finance goals, which is raising money. To mobilization -- our political goals, getting grassroots out there, getting folks to the polls and actually voting for our candidates. And message, which is getting our message out there and hoping that it resonates, and helping drive the message into the grassroots and to the public.|
|Markos Moulitsas: But I hope that what we're creating is culture where people don't feel a need to wait for "so-called leaders" to tell them to act to do anything. It's that they'll take that initiative on their own -- the tools are available.|
|Mindy Finn: There's some hierarchy to respect. And I think there always -- I think there always will be and there always has been just to make sure that it's efficient and organized. But that what that hierarchy is all about is really putting people in touch with like-minded individuals -- empowering the grassroots. I mean, you have to have someone kind of crafting message. You have someone making sure that message is getting out to these individuals.|
|Kent Bye: I think it's important to find that balance between top-down leadership and bottom-up participation without being too extreme on either end. What I hope to do with my open source documentary is help find that healthy balance. What I've done is I've gone out and taken the initiative to gather all of these interviews -- and ask the questions. But I'm releasing a lot of control with how the final film comes together. So I hope to have a community help collaborative edit and shape the film. So here's Doc Searls talking more about open source communities work.|
|Doc Searls: Groups of people that work together in much the same way as -- say as a group of farmers would raise a barn. Right? And there's a shared understanding of what needs to be done. People step forward who have particular expertise, and they'll work on that part of the project.|
|Kent Bye: Large-scale collaborative media can provide a lot of answers to some of the questions surrounding grassroots activism and bottom-up democracy. Small-scale collaboration is already possible with blogs, podcasts and video blogs -- but additional tools -- like the ones that I described in the previous episode -- have to be developed in order to facilitate collaboration on a large-scale. I'm still searching for funders and potential [software] programmers. So if you're interested in getting more involved, then please drop by the website and leave a comment.|