GAH. Am I actually reading Meghan McCain's piece in the Daily Beast, about how her blog was the unused secret weapon in the 2008 Campaign Battle on the Internet? Yes, apparently:
When I first suggested launching a blog chronicling my experience on my father's campaign for president, I was met with confusion and resistance. A few people even asked me what's a blog. Throughout the campaign, I did everything possible to showcase the fun and interesting parts of the campaign. I posted pictures. I wrote posts. I even included a playlist of my favorite songs. But often, I got the sense that people on the campaign thought I was wasting my time.
Yes, Meghan tried. Lord how she tried to INVIGORATE the GOP message online, with her Flickr account, and her daughterly neediness. But you can imagine the confusion and resistance she was met with from people who just sort of thought that affecting a significant shift in the electorate wasn't going to come about by enthusing about INTERNET and IPOD and NEW VAMPIRE WEEKEND MP3s!
"The Republican party isn't exactly Internet savvy," McCain says, "That's no secret. This has been a source of personal frustration for me for a very long time." And while I suspect that by "very long time" she means "the past couple of hours," she's otherwise right. The McCain campaign had the dumb Barackbook parody, a fitful approach to social networks, and an official campaign blog written by Michael Goldfarb (I wonder how Meghan felt about that, by the way). And now, Michael Steele's going to have some "off-the-hook" hip-hop Twitters with only the dopest, most "urban" hashtags, or something. None of those things are, were, or will be the campaign category-killers the GOP needs. But all were considerably more "internet savvy" than McCain Blogette.
Here's the sort of good advice from "Republican online strategist and designer" Rob Kubasko that McCain should be heeding, instead of pretending on the Daily Beast that she's already mastered: "But we have to understand what drives success. In some ways we continue to put the cart before the horse. Technology does not drive success. Message (especially a well crafted one) drives success."
It's just impossible to disassociate the larger concern -- that the GOP needs to sensibly reinvigorate their online strategies -- with Meghan McCain's strong and obvious beef: that her "Blogette" was not shown sufficient respect. "I used to categorize many of the advisors in my father's campaign into one of two groups: those that 'respected' the Internet and those who didn't," she writes. "It was a running line between me and my friends who worked on my site."
Yes. Sounds like the group of people who labored to bring you a bunch of photos of Meghan McCain and occasional iTunes playlists were really onto something.