The progressive "netroots," fueled by bloggers writing on websites like the Daily Kos and working through online organizations like MoveOn, are on the verge of spearheading a revolution that may well define the coming political era. Still, their purpose, goals, and track record remain largely misunderstood. This book provides an understanding of the loosely affiliated groups that collectively call themselves the progressive netroots: who they are, what they hope to accomplish, what they've done so far and how likely it is they will succeed in a plan so audacious it would result, if realized, in the transformation of America from a television-focused, center-right nation to an Internet-focused, center-left nation. Netroots weaves together a range of evidence and arguments to shatter conventional myths about this online movement. It explains why the left is better positioned than the right to take advantage of the decentralized nature of the Internet. As progressive candidates make uneven progress toward winning elections, the progressive netroots are working to drive media narratives and building real and virtual communities of activists that will contribute strongly to electoral success. Netroots documents the achievements of this emerging political force through an engaging analysis told with an eye toward history and in the bloggers' own words.
Table of Contents
List of Boxes and Tables Preface and Acknowledgments Chapter 1: The Emerging Era of Internet Politics Chapter 2: Technology and Political Change: Slow March to Sudden Burst Printing Technology and the Jacksonian Revolution The Telegraph and Lincoln's Republican Politics FDR, Radio, and Manufactured Intimacy Nixon and Television's Deceptions The Internet and Small-D Democracy Chapter 3: The Two Blogospheres: How Left and Right Are Structured In the Beginning, There Was Dean From a Distance, Similarities Between Right and Left Up Close: The Activist Heart of Progressive Blogs A "Bourgeois Elite" Chapter 4: The Progressive Blogosphere and Political Effectiveness Metrics of Netroots Success Contested House Seats Donor Base and Contribution Size Hybrid Campaigning Candidate Convergence Nonfederal Candidates Conclusion Chapter 5: The Progressive Blogosphere and Media Narratives New Narratives, Framing, and Power Framing Policy Framing Politics Opposing False Balance Opposing Lazy Journalists Conclusion Chapter 6: The Progressive Blogosphere and the Creation of Community Cynicism Versus Social Capital Blogs as Communities Real-World Communities Conclusion Chapter 7: Open Source Politics in the Obama Era Transforming Process: Hybrid Campaigning Transforming Narratives: Blogging as Journalism Transforming Politics: The Self and the Community Appendix Notes References Index About the Author