Internet Activism

The Web Wires the Movement
Internet Activism

Andrew Boyd writes: "The Battle in Seattle brought to the world's attention a new global resistance movement that was not only made possible by the Internet but, as Naomi Klein has deftly pointed out, was shaped in its image. Sharing the Internet's architecture of interconnected hubs and spokes, the new movement was a coalition of coalitions, a decentralized network of campaigns 'intricately and tightly linked to one another.'"

Could the Internet Do for the Left What Talk Radio Has Done for the Right?
Internet Activism

Ron Brownstein writes: "For about 15 years, a nationwide constellation of right-leaning talk-radio hosts has provided conservatives a powerful means of mobilizing their grass-roots supporters to enlist in causes and campaigns. The left has never been able to establish a competing galaxy of liberal gabbers -- or to find an alternative mechanism that can persuade and activate as many voters as talk radio. That alternative may have arrived last week. History may record former Vermont Gov. Howard Dean's unprecedented success at raising money online for his Democratic presidential campaign as the moment when the Internet emerged as a political tool comparable in strength to talk radio. Over the last three months, Dean raised $3.6 million on the Internet from nearly 45,000 donors; last Monday alone, in a kind of electronic telethon, Dean collected a breathtaking $820,000 as supporters rushed to pad his total on the final day of the second-quarter fund-raising reporting period."

Blogging Beats the Blahs
Internet Activism

Farai Chideya writes, "Television is mesmeric, engaging, and according to scientific research, addictive... Kubey and Csikszentmihalyi were surprised that 'the sense of relaxation ends when the set is turned off, but the feelings of passivity and lowered alertness continue.' In other words, we end up feeling sludgy and powerless right after a big TV binge. But online news consumers have found a very different -- and highly active -- way of getting their information. Some of the most sophisticated news consumers, including progressives worldwide, have become the 'blog'-era equivalent of news editors. By both receiving and distributing information via email, they vote with the click of a mouse on what information matters. 'It's nice to have these `intelligent agents' -- my friends and list neighbors -- passing along the worthiest columns and news stories,' says musician and radio producer David Gans."

CLG Responds to NY Times Attack
Internet Activism

"Citizens for Legitimate Government is cited in a New York Times Op-ed commentary today: 'Bush is criticized not just for catastrophically frittering away our budget surplus or for rushing us into a mess in Iraq. Rather, Citizens for Legitimate Government put it this way in its e-mail newsletter: 'We have an Idiot Usurping Lying Weasel for a President.'" [That's not dumbing it down, Kristoff, nor is it replacing argument with invective. We have made our arguments, cogently, consistently and without cessation. It is you who are dumbed down, failing to read beyond our own comments, failing to do your research into the essays we've written and the enormous resources we bring to expose the Coup and counter the Occuapation. Try starting here for the coup, continue here for the Occupation and our resistance to it, and here for other commentary with solid argumentation. And, by the way, we stand behind that comment: Bush IS an Idiot Usurping Lying Weasel.]" You go, CLG!

Secret Service Investigates Anti-Bush Web Site
Internet Activism

Mike Hershdorfer, webmaster of bushoccupation.com, received a visit from the Secret Service on January 2. Citing a vague tip about the site, "they asked Hershdorfer for a list of Web sites he had visited, and for permission to search his house and review his medical records. They also asked him how he felt about the Clintons and Bush — and whether he had ever threatened to blow up the White House." Hershdorfer suspects a Freeper set him up.