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Tuesday, October 7, 2003

Campaign 2004 Partisan-Blog Duel Begins

Both the Democratic party and the GOP are now blogging.

The Democrats' Kicking Ass site announced its Republican counterpart today.  It also provided a link to the Bush site -- as well as inviting readers to comment. (More than 40 comments had accumulated before I saw the announcement a few hours later. Apparently one pro-Republican comment had been deleted -- from someone who refused to register with the site, but used the name "Shut the Hell Up.")

There's no direct "comment" feature on the Bush site, but it does include a Bush campaign blog logo, available for downloading, in which a single blob-looking "B" begins both "Bush" and "Blog."

Both presidentially partisan blogs link to newspaper stories and editorials to support their causes, so it will be interesting to watch which papers they favor... perhaps a mass communication master's project for someone. Will it be mostly New York Post for Bush and Minneapolis Star Tribune for the Democrats? (Those are the latest print-press links on the two blogs.)

It also could be instructive to watch story selection, summarizing and spin. Do the sites link to news briefs or in-depth reports? For example, the GOP site provides its own upbeat headline for an AP story from Afghanistan, using an abbreviated broadcast wire version from a New Haven TV station. The story had a longer and less rosy counterpart at newspaper sites like the Atlanta Constitution. In contrast, the Democrat site links one of its items to reports in Time, the Weekly Standard and Newsweek.

Of course Web-savvy readers of either sites can find alternative treatments to any story using tools like Google News, but some may be too busy to bother and just pass around partisan blog links, preaching to the choir. Stay tuned...
9:49:15 PM    

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