Tonight I'm going to MoveOn.org's awards for the winning ad in their Bush in 30 Seconds contest, which sought the ad that "best tells the truth about President Bush's failed policies." The web site for the contest also has a simple, effective list of concerns about the president and the administration. In another sign that e-advocacy has arrived on the map, coverage of this contest is highlighting the way MoveOn is "ceding control over much of the content to motivated online participants, producing interactivity that adds grass-roots credibility." Technology has given rise what Steven Johnson recently called a "curatorial culture", in which thousands of individual selections yield results that are stronger for the hive-like collaboration that created them. Sites like Slashdot, epinions and Kuro5hin showed what's possible when all participants became co-curators of information. But since the Dean campaign revitalized interest in the Internet, the idea of peer-to-peer politics has…

You have got to be kidding me. According to columnist James Brovard in this SF Chronicle opinion piece, protesters at presidential appearances are being cordoned off in "free speech zones" or "protest zones," sometimes well away from the actual spot where George W. Bush will be. Meanwhile, people with messages of support are "permitted to line the president's path." When Bush went to the Pittsburgh area on Labor Day 2002, 65-year-old retired steel worker Bill Neel was there to greet him with a sign proclaiming, "The Bush family must surely love the poor, they made so many of us." The local police, at the Secret Service's behest, set up a "designated free-speech zone" on a baseball field surrounded by a chain-link fence a third of a mile from the location of Bush's speech. ... Neel refused to go to the designated area and was arrested for disorderly conduct; the police…

The architect who won the highly-publicized contest to design a rebuilt World Trade Center and the architect hired by the site's developer have apparently agreed on a plan for the site's 1,776 foot tower.

The "Freedom Tower" plan by Daniel Libeskind was chosen by the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation as "the design concept" for the site, while David M. Childs heads the team retained by developer Larry Silverstein, who took over the commercial space on the WTC property the summer before the 9/11 attacks.

Last month I read an article in The Times about the director of NBC's Saving Jessica Lynch, Peter Markle. Markle and George W. Bush were frat brothers at Yale, "although they have not stayed in close touch since." This isn't troubling in itself. The line between our political elite and our media elite is blurrier than Andrea Mitchell's face seen without the help of Alan Greenspan's glasses. But it seemed funny when Markle was asked to comment on the war in Iraq: ... it is possible to get some insight into the war and, through Mr. Markle, into Mr. Bush. Mr. Markle does not know if the president saw "Saving Jessica Lynch" — the White House would not say last week — but he thinks his old buddy from Yale would have viewed it sympathetically. "I think George is a realist," Mr. Markle said. "I think he looks at the…

It's the human element that makes the Internet a phenomenon and not just an invention. So Samantha Shapiro's profile of the kids behind the Howard Dean campaign is especially astute. Who could have predicted in the heady days of '98-'99 that a huge NYT Magazine piece about an internet sensation would devote scant inches to the technology and pages and pages to the human drama, while also demonstrating an understanding of how the two connect. Dean supporters do not drive 200 miles through 10 inches of snow to see a political candidate or a representative of his staff. They drive that far to see each other. The technology is just the platform. The engine is the people -- and their passion, or maybe their determination to affix their passion somewhere meaningful and put their passion to good use. It's funny, though, that despite the article's focus on the emotions behind…

Close