Politics goes Web 2.0

In a testament to how far social media and the Web 2.0 world have come, presidential hopeful Fred Thompson, made a YouTube video in response to a Michael Moore documentary. Politics aside, Fred Thompson's rebuttal is significant because it shows that Web 2.0 has become widely recognized as an effective medium of communication to a growing portion of the population.

According to Alexa Internet, MySpace is currently the world's fifth most popular English-language website, the fifth most popular website in any language, and the third most popular website in the United States, though it has topped the chart on various weeks.
MySpace Traffic
Combine this popularity with the fact that over 80% of MySpace users are able to vote , and one can predict the impact MySpace specifically, and social media in general, can have upon a campaign. At the very least, these numbers suggest that political campaigns are not only about traditional media buys anymore.

The question remains to be seen whether the political parties will use social media for its intended use. I wrote about the failings of traditional media buys on social media sites a few weeks back. Will politicians use social media to engage their constituents in ongoing dialogue and open discussion as Fred Thompson did, or will they use these sites to broadcast their message as they do on traditional media outlets?

The larger question for businesses is do you want to harness the power of social media to engage your audience? More importantly, is your company ready to mold their social media campaigns to fit the medium?

[tags]social media, MySpace, Alexa, Fred Thompson [/tags]


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