The Washington Post has a front-page feature about the internet strategists for the presidential campaigns, a group the Post refers to as the “online political operatives” (OPO’s) or simply “the gurus.” I knew these folks were young, but I didn’t realize how young. Stephen Smith, Romney’s internet strategist, is 25. Patrick Ruffini, who runs Giuliani’s internet operation (and ran President Bush’s three years ago), is 28.
I have great respect for Smith, Ruffini, and Patrick Hynes (McCain’s blog outreach guy, who isn’t mentioned in the article). However, I agree with Obama’s campaign manager when he says, “the internet is a powerful organizing and fund raising tool, and it’s getting more and more important every day, but it’s still not the persuasion and message tool that TV is.”
The Obama campaign should know. No candidate has come further in less time than its guy. And he did it the old-fashioned way — a great speech at the national convention, pictures on the cover of leading magazine, and (crazy as it sounds) writing books.
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