This election cycle, more than any other before, has been influenced by New Media – the internet, blogs, social networking, and other things that have only become wide-spread in use and access. With how new these things are, anyone has been able to comment on anything and everything, and many more people are getting attention from people around the world.
Many events have influenced this election, but I’d like to highlight a few that showed how the internet and new media have changed the election process.
Palin’s statements have been a dominate meme since the Republican National Convention – especially these two. Even after the election is over (albeit for just more a week), jokes are still made about bridges and “I can see [insert country] from my house!” We’ll have to wait and see how long they will last, but I doubt that they will fade quickly.
While not as prevalent a meme, this phrase made its own circuit of the internet and the blogs and eventually moved to the more traditional media outlets. It continued to be pulled back out during debates and the worst part of the economic crisis – beit an economic or a political “worst”, however you personally interpret it.
[A related cirulation was the idea of suspending a campaign (or, for joke purposes, homework, assignments, break times, or any number of things), but this was not a new media centered event, it deserves only a mention, but not its own entry.]
1. “That One”
In one of the greatest moments of new media and this election, mere hours – between the end of the debate and the next morning, easily – www.thatone08.com was up and running, selling T-shirts and showing videos using the phrase – and making fun of it, of course. While, in the end, it might not have played that large of a role in the result of the election, it was a perfect example of new media commenting on and affecting the political process, specifically media made of people working from home – people who were perhaps not professional bloggers or writers and were just politically active and aware, and had the tools and put in the time to do what they could.
As a student, a writer, and a blogger, this has been an amazing experience – both to watch the amazing things that people like myself have done, and to do a small part myself in working within the democratic process.
But, to end on a different note, I would like to send a thank you to Rachel Maddow for sticking up for those of us who blog in our pajamas from home – though I must say that not everyone has basements. They are a little impossible in coastal areas when I lived until college.
Thank you all for an amazing election cycle, and goodnight!