About Water Moccasins and Thinking Ahead
If you follow American politics and the tactics of the presidential campaigns on and off the web, you’re aware of ways they savage each other. But, have you really thought about how these same tactics can be easily and effectively used against your organization?
Are you really aware of how much the damaging effects of humor, sarcasm and parody come into play when these same tactics are used by those opposed to your cause?
I sure hope so, because like the deadly water moccasin, the strike is sudden, and at first silent. Then the poison erupts in viral circulation through blogs and emails and turns deadly. Unless you’re on top of the new media and what’s happening in cyberspace affecting thousands or millions you won’t see it coming. Nor will you be prepared.
For our readers in the ideological and issue advocacy sphere of the fundraising and communications spectrum our adivice is simple: get ready. What you see online in American politics will quickly migrate to issue and policy concerns as well. As we all learned in tenth grade biology ‘ontology recapitulates phylology’ (or in the words of Ms. Gibson, my biology teacher at Gettysburg High, "evolution makes sure strong stuff sticks").
Thus, the latest "love fest" debate between the Democratic candidates for the presidency, is immediately transmuted and translated by the alternative press and blogs of the internet. And the volume and quality of debate is modified and easily distorted.
Start paying attention right now by viewing this independent and well-produced video spoof on Friday night’s debate between Clinton and Obama.
Of course it’s ‘comedy’ and ‘parody’ but you won’t be laughing when your opponents use this tactic on you.
Please pay attention. You simply must anticipate and be ready to deal with the "Wild West" tactics of the internet. Look again at the ‘mashup" spoof of last week’s debate created by Cup O’Politics ( in fact, look at a lot of their other stuff as well) and think how similar tactics, less benign, far more malignant in the hands of your opponents could be used against your cause.
Forewarned is forearmed.
P.S. If you work for an organization with an ideological orientation and aren’t monitoring what your opponents are doing online, in the mail and in the press, and if you don’t have an Immediate Response Plan for all of these channels, well you oughta be fired.