The Next President Will Be A PodcasterDec 27th, 2006 | By James Lewin | Category: Audio Podcasting, Citizen Media, Podcasting Events, Video Podcasts, Vlogs
Podtech’s Robert Scoble is on his way to New Orleans to cover John Edward’s Thursday announcement that he will be running for President. The Edwards event is significant, not only for Edward’s announcement, but for Edward’s understanding of the increasing importance of Internet media.
Edwards is arguably the most Net-savvy of likely candidates. He has been actively courting the interest of bloggers and podcasters. Earlier in this year, Edwards attended Gnomedex, a conference that focuses on technology and independent publishing, seeking attendees’ input on how politicians should use Internet media. Edwards was also one of the first politicians to have his own podcast.
At Gnomedex, Edwards said that “The next president of the United States is going to be the single candidate that doesn’t sound like a politician.”
We think it’s safe to go one step further. The next president of the United States will be a podcaster. The next president will be someone that understands how to use podcasting and video podcasting effectively. And just as importantly, the next president will be someone that can navigate the potential minefield of citizen media.
Earlier in the year, we saw how failing to adapt to the world of Internet video can kill a candidate’s chances. Republican U.S. Senator George Allen of Virginia is remembered by many more for his “macaca” reference to an Indian American than his record as a legislator. Allen failed to recognize that anyone can now be the media, and that an off-the-cuff remark at a small rally can be world news in an instant.
It’s obviously too early to suggest that John Edwards will be the next president. He’s got a lot going for him, but he also carries a lot of baggage from the last election, and is seen by some as relatively inexperienced.
Nevertheless, Edward’s announcement will introduce a strong, net-savvy candidate into the race, and emphasize the increased importance of podcasting and other Internet media to the future of politics in the US.