Frank Rich wrote an incisive article in The Times documenting some of McCain’s recent missteps, miscalculations, misfires, and, well, mistakes. The article and Katie Couric’s interview of Sarah Palin, some clips of which are embedded below, don’t require any commentary from me.
What I can comment on is this passage from the Rich column:
That was not the only bad news raining down on McCain. His camp knew what Katie Couric had in the can from her interview with Sarah Palin. The first excerpt was to be broadcast by CBS that night, and it had to be upstaged fast.
McCain did succeed in temporarily upstaging the Couric interview. I, for one, didn’t watch it until this morning, 4 days or so after it originally aired. The key word, however, is temporarily. The interview is still widely available all over the internet and since its airing, I’ve received countless communications about it: emails, blog posts, Google Reader shares, Facebook postings, etc. etc. Even though everyone was focussed on the debate through Saturday afternoon, the Couric interview did not and will not die until everyone who wants to see it does.
It’s another excellent example of the democratic power of the internet. Campaigns, and even the mainstream media itself, have much less control over the news stream than they did even 4 years ago. The “American people” don’t just see what “they” want us to see. More than ever, we see what we want to see. And if I think a news item is particularly informative, it’s incredibly be easy for me to disseminate it. With several clicks, I can share it with my 300+ Facebook friends, share it on my Google Reader, put it on my blog, email it to friends and family, and, newly, post it to my NYTimes Network, not to mention highly popular services that I don’t use, like Digg, Mixx, and Yahoo! Buzz. Distribution is suddenly, in large part, an operation of the masses. We might be entering the Curation Generation, where we all collectively decide what’s important, what’s good, and finally, what gets attention.
So here I go with some distribution…well, where not all the way there yet…the embed function of the CBS News video isn’t really working with my hosted Word Press. Here are some links: