Wednesday, May 02, 2007


New Media Giveth... media taketh away?

So, a few weeks back, Barack Obama got a big online boost from the anti-Hillary "1984"
parody ad.

Well, one wonders whether the Obama team's behavior with this fan-created MySpace site will blow up in their candidate's face. Yes, we only have creator Joe Anthony's
version of events to go on, but it has the ring of truth to me. Essentially, this guy worked for years on an Obama MySpace profile (he first put it up in November 2004) and the Obama campaign basically yanked it from him this week without compensation.

I believe Anthony when he says he wasn't holding out on the Obama people just for the money. Seriously. Given that the guy had brought in 160,000 MySpace friends, his price of $50,000 for creating and working on the site for two-and-a-half years was a remarkably fair offer. It comes to a bit more than $1600 a month.

Even if it wasn't, why couldn't the Obama people have come back with a counter-offer?

If Hillary Clinton or John Edwards are smart, they will hire Anthony very quickly. This seems like a very creative guy who has suddenly been victimized by the candidate who wants to "change the style" of politics. Not smart. Not smart at all.

(By the way, I'm aware that Obama and Co. might be legally in the right, given various laws covering cyber-squatting and the like. But politics is about more than just "legal" issues -- there are moral and "public relations" aspects in play as well. And on the latter, Barack Obama comes up short.)

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