What is local blogging

Cross-posted at lotusmedia and DailyKos.

At Yearly Kos I kept hearing that local blogging is where it's at. There were two panels and a caucus on "state-local blogging." The San Francisco Chronicle reports that "Local blogs are key to future of politics." People are learning that the smaller the area represented, the more impact each constituent has (as was also pointed out in this article I blogged about last week).

And yet, there was hardly a mention of county or municipal politics at Yearly Kos, other than how to work with local Democratic Parties. I'm certainly not opposed to advocacy targeting state and federal reps - in fact BlueNC.com does a great job of this and more power to you and your brethren across the country - but I think that truly local politics transcends party and hinges much more on individual relationships and reputations in a way that even state house races really don't.

Accordingly, local blogging also has much to do with the authority and connections of the author. If I had started OrangePolitics under a pseudonym, not many people would have read it and even less would care what I had to say. The elected officials and other people I blog about are often my friends, or at least people I am likely to see at the grocery store. We all have to remember to treat each other as human so we can get along for the next few decades.

Another big difference is in publicity, the ostensible topic of one of the panels I was on at yKos. When we are writing on OrangePolitics, we are writing to the people of Orange County, NC. That is our solitary audience. Almost every method available for blog promotion reaches out to people irrespective of location. I can think of a few exceptions, like Facebook's regional networks, but for the most part these tools feel sort of irrelevant to me. Links from national sources like LeftyBlogs.com may help with Google Ranking, but how likely are people in my county to go looking to a national source for local information?

I'm really glad to see political bloggers becoming aware of how much power they can have at the state and local level. But I hope folks will try to step away from a lot of what they know about politics and get their hands dirty meeting their neighbors and learning about local issues that aren't easily painted in black and white.


might i suggest...

...that bluenc provides a solution of sorts-my name creates no imprimiteur to the public, but the community of nc readers that find theiir way to blue nc seems to create a 1+ 1 = 3 equation that allows my interest in nc politics and nc voter's interests to intersect at the same place, independent of my reputation and ability to distribute.

my presonal blog would never create that sort of interest unless the huffington folks wanted me out of the gate, or some other odd circumstance; and i would further suggest the "crossposting" strategy is a response to this.

it's one reason i support community blogging.

"...i feel that if a person can't communicate, the very least he can do is to shut up." --tom lehrer, january 1965

Local blogging

I imagine by local, some of the folks really meant state blogging. Blogging hasn't taken off in Charlotte. Chahlotteans are much too sophisticated to participate in anything as crass as blogging. :) Local blogs - as in pertaining to a city or county - might take a bit longer to catch on, but I imagine that as more people participate in blogging their daily reading list will include their local, state and a few national blogs. At least, that's what I hope.

Robin Hayes lied. Nobody died, but thousands of folks lost their jobs.

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

I love local blogging and wish I had more time for it

Orange Politics is what got me started in political blogging in the first place. Up until then I spent my time on writers' blogs, professional (marketing) blogs, and special interest stuff (rowing, art, etc.).

In a small state, local and state would probably be conflated, but in NC, they're definitely two different things. That personal angle is hard to come by at BlueNC, though I'm gradually meeting many of the other frequent bloggers. So far I've met you, Robert P., Betsy, Greg, BlueSouth, DemonDeac, DQ, Screwy, Syntax, Momo, Lcloud, Stan & Nan. But I don't really "know" folks in real life.

More worrisome, I also don't know or see the cogs in the right wing machine who are working so hard to screw up North Carolina. I'm not sure I could stomach it, but I suspect it would be healthy to have some personal interaction with them.

Much to think about.

Asheville is starting to have some interesting conversations

people on both sides of the issues in several local blogs. The upside-down flag on the Asheville Citizen-Times blog was so ugly I never even went to check it out. (This is the message board from when the charges were dropped).

Screwy Hoolie has gotten some great conversations going at Scrutiny Hooligans on the local Democratic Party machine, immigration, racism, and, most recently the push to reinstate partisan elections in the city (here's a post which at this point has 74 comments!). Every single post has drawn the comments of someone who vehemently disagrees with him. I think he's even met some of these folks (oppponents) at DL. The head of the committee to do strategic planning for the 11th District even left his phone number for Screwy on the site. (That was brave and good thing, Max Haner!)

Some of the conversations are rude, full of inaccuracies, or weird but the good news is that both sides are talking on the intertubes in Asheville, and that's gotta be a good thing.
News of the 10th district: See Pat Go Bye Bye,

There are some hilarious people/comments on there

Thanks for linking to it. Mostly the wingers come out and comment in Meck. Looks like Asheville has a better mix. Lost of push back on the moronic statements of the wingers on the board.

Robin Hayes lied. Nobody died, but thousands of folks lost their jobs.

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