Media Center’s "We Media" Webcast Rocked!

Amazingly, not everyone was at Battelle’s Web 2.0 conference this week. Some of us were enjoying a rousing webcast put on by the Media Center. Lucky for you, you can read my write-up and click-through to listen on your own! 🙂


On October 5th, 2004, The Media Center held its first public webcast, entitled “We Media: The Impact of Participatory Media on Election 2004”.

Set against the backdrop of the upcoming 2004 U.S. Presidential elections and a heated environment fueled by a wave of backlash from Big Media figures in response to the blog powered CBS/Dan Rather fiasco, the webcast pulled together a panel of broadcast and print journalists, bloggers, and web entrepreneurs. Over 100 people tuned in by computer or phone to follow the action.

And, fortunately, “action packed” – and “insight packed” – is an apt description of what transpired. From the rapid-fire questions and answers between the moderator and panelists, the simultaneous polling of the audience, the non-stop comments in the chat room, and the questions on the Q&A board, it was clear that everyone came prepared to participate in a conversation about media participation.

With 100+ people participating at a fevered pitch for an hour, it’s simply impossible to callout all of the great insights; rather, you can just listen (for free) yourself. (You can also check out the Media Center blog).

Some of the particularly notable takeaways, however, include:

– The continually escalating impact technology (the Internet in particular) is having on political participation, as evidenced through online voter registration, online research, blogging (and blog syndication), and instant accessibility to foreign opinions on U.S. policies.

– The ability for individuals to select (and vet) whose opinions they want to read from millions of authors (vs. the usual suspects), and the sense of personal connection and community they feel when reading and interacting with those authors and one another.

– The impact that these forces may have on this – and future – elections, with a greater percentage of Americans (particularly amongst youth and minority voters) expected to vote this year… representing the reversal of multi-decade slide.

But as mentioned, this is just a small sampling of the insights in the webcast, and may not be the ones most striking or important to you. Fortunately all of the days events are captured in perpetuity for your own analysis; so very fitting, considering the topic!

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