Edwards: OAC Blog

I missed this yesterday, but this is a great take on harnessing the internet and blogs, and a BlueNC reader's view on the fact that Edwards is not harnessing efficiently.

John Edwards has retooled his One America Committee blog, but it still seems as though he doesn't get it. Despite what often comes across as sincerity in his public speaking, this blog comes across as forgivingly hokey at best, and painfully contrived at worst. For example, in describing the new structure of the site, Joe (the administrator, perhaps) explains that he would call the operation a "blogocrasy."
The netroots have obviously demonstrated some power. This has left the uninvolved wondering what percentage of our potential did that power represent. It only makes sense to try and harness that power, and in the case of Edwards, we ought to applaud him for trying to use that power for such good causes (i.e. minimum wage increase.) Nonetheless, he doesn't seem to get it. He seems so uncomfortable in the community he is courting.
Edwards made an foray into blogging last year as the first guest at the TPM Cafe's Table for One. There, it seemed that his idea of blogging meant putting position papers on a website: one-way, 2-D. The OAC blog is worse. Where at TPM he was out of place (his form, by no means were his ideas) here he is just plain uncomfortable.
The point is, there a plenty of bloggers out there, and he will not likely add much to the "blogosphere." What he could do would be to release old fashion position papers on-line, at OAC, and then get involved in the discussion of these positions.
That, or he could can the whole OAC thing and start blogging over here.


Interesting observations

I agree with you that some people get this virtual world instantly and hit the ground running, while others struggle to find their voices and rhythms. I've been at it in various venues for about three years now and still don't know what I'm doing . . . even though I always feel right at home. :)

Let's keep a close eye on OAC and see how it evolves . . . and even share some feedback (like what you've written here). Goodness knows, John's ideas about equity and fairness are important to get on the table as often as we can.


PS And for the record, John Edwards, you're welcome to come here to BlueNC anytime you have something to say. We're wide open.

Foppert, I registered there

but I haven't been back. I love John Edwards, but I agree the blog site is not really run like a blog. I think it might have simply worked better as a web site, but like Anglico said it sometimes takes a while to catch on.

Thanks for posting. It's great to have different voices here.

Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own.

May I ask you what exactly

May I ask you what exactly about the OAC blog is "un-blogish" for you? In fact, Edwards does get it. This is the most sophisticated blog out there by any politician. It is basically like Daily Kos, except for due to its community being smaller, it is able to be more integrated.

There are 5000 registered users, many of them professional bloggers who are enjoying the intereaction there and nothing about it smells of being hokey, though I concede that naming the concept of the blog "a blogocracy" is a tad uncreative.

You put out accusations that say Edwards doesn't get it, however, I would like to know what is he doing wrong there? Those of us who've been tracking the evolution of the blogosphere have yet to find a better model for a politician's blog - and it works well for any kind of blog. And, this blog wasn't launched yesterday... it has been in effect for about more than a month - and if you'd take the time to explore, you'll see the wealth of the arguments and discussions there.

There are no policy papers there, we - the online community - posts diaries and other entries. Have you even checked it out? He has an accompanying site, which can be found here: www.oneamericacommittee.com or www.johnedwards.com, and that is where the policy papers go.

And, Edwards is uncomfortable? He has only posted one blog entry as of yet, the rest are all by his staffers and others by individual users. I thought his TMPCafe blog entries were well done... he put forth ideas and initiated discussion... and that is the purpose of a blog.

I'm sorry but I don't want my elected officials to sit around surfing blogs and replying to every comment that was ever posted. And, I don't think the purpose behind the blog is for Edwards to become a professional blogger (whatever that is), but instead, he is just facilitating a blog community for his supporters and any other blogger who is interested. Your criticism is unsubstantiated. If that blog is what one calls "contrived" then I don't know what adjective to use for this one. That is not a diss - but just a fair evaluation of where the two stand.

My recommendation: explore the damn thing before passing judgments. Take care.


I upgraded this because I know there is a lot of disagreement over how to run a blog. One thing that we pride ourselves on here is that anyone can register and post their own diary. Since you have so much to say in this comment, please take the time to register and post your own diary supporting the site. If it is good, I will promote it to the front page.

Well my first impression

which was only after a brief visit was a bit disappointing. When I see pictures by featured diaries I expect to see a little more in them. It's obvious that it's a site that is related to John Edward's One America, so if their diaries are only going to utilized a handful of times each year you could provide a link to the side titled "Edward's Family Diaries". I expected to see a little more from them, afterall, they are the only reason I signed up to begin with. They are busy people and it is certainly understandable that they don't post every day. It was just a disappointment and that was my initial response. Between MyDD, DKos, FireDogLake and BlueNC I have all the "community" I can handle.

If John Edwards isn't the one blogging I don't know the people who are. I could find information about Josh Marshall, Jeralyn Merritt, Jane Hamsher, Christy Smith, Markos, Jerome, etc on their sites, but I couldn't find information about the "staff" posters at OneAmerica. Since it appears you want to compete with/join the MyDD, DKos, TPM Cafe crowd I expect to find some bios or something so I can establish some trust in the person/people I'm getting my news from. In that respect, I do hold your OneAmericaBlog to a higher standard than BlueNC. (Though it isn't a bad idea...LAAAAANCE)

I have two blogs of my own and then this blog and don't really need another community. I barely have enough time to handle what I have going. I simply was disappointed at finding that John wasn't active at the blog. Representative Brad Miller has guest blogged here more often than John Edwards has blogged at his own site. It doesn't have to be a long post, just something that gives a sense of personal contact. That's what would help differentiate your blog community from all the others out there.

Today, I went again just to be fair before I responded to your post. The load times were very long and I have a cable connection that is very fast. I also was a bit confused by the little tabs at top that supposedly were to separate different types of posts and each section contained the exact same posts.

I look forward to checking back periodically and seeing how the site develops. As I mentioned in my post above I love John Edwards. I'm proud he represents North Carolina so well in everything he does.

Thank you for posting and I'm sorry if you didn't like what was said or what I have said in response to you. Oh...and to compare our little site to a well-funded site like One America is a bit absurd. To answer your question, though. We are providing a source and site where progressive bloggers in North Carolina can network. I just came on board, but these guys have accomplished a tremendous amount in the short life of this blog. We appreciate you stopping by.

Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own.