I’m at a panel called “Working from the Inside Out: Success Stories in Netroots Organizing”
Tim Karr of Free Press: Talking about the COPE Act in 2006. (Dealing with Net Neutrality) Worked with MoveOn and the netroots. Mentioned Ask a Ninja even doing videos in favor of net neutrality. Killed the bill. Wonky peeps at free press worked with bloggers to figure out how to do messaging.
Joan McCarter: Talks about FISA.
Liz Rose of the ACLU: How to deal with bloggers: pretty much the same as reporters. Give them information, make sure they understand it, understand who you’re talking to (read their stuff beforehand). pretty much the same as reporters, but 24-hours-a-day. “Know who you’re sending stuff to, do it on a regular basis and have a dialogue with them”
Andre Banks of Color of Change: There are lots of people who don’t think of themselves as activists but talk to their friends about politics, etc. Here’s a success story – Jena 6. No one was paying attention to this except Democracy Now!. So we needed to draw attention, pressure governor, and raise money for legal defense. Partnered with black bloggers. THey did research, investigations, asked the right questions and turned this into a story people care about. We mobilized people to go to Jena, raised money for their defense.
There seems to be a lot of emphasis on wonky institutions (ACLU, Free Press) taking complicated legal issues and turning them into digestible issues that people can understand. Perhaps blogs contain people who are good at that sort of thing?
Adam Green of Moveon: When I was lobbying re:Net Neutrality, I heard a lot of this sort of talk: “Net Neutrality is a golden ring, we have to be incremental, etc” What I realized was that staffers on the hill didn’t know that there was a movement of people willing to go to bat for them. Byron Dorgan knows it, because he works with us a lot. We can put pressure on his colleagues where he can’t. We can do stuff a lot more quickly than meetings on the hill – Open Left project of calling a bunch of candidates to see where they stand on net neutrality. Last year re-NN. August last year was a unique opportunity. Senators left the beltway, and then we had constituents see them during recess. 6 new senators came off the fence then because they outside the lobbyist/telco axis. Lesson – look for opportunities to strike, and strike then. For 2008 – we wanted to get people on the record during the primary. We couldn’t do it during the YearlyKos questions, but we got MTV and Myspace forum to ask it to Obama (through 10Questions), and he rsponded beautifully.
Adam Green’s lessons – wait for a moment to strike. And put as many of your people on the inside as possible.
joan McCarter – have an ally in the senate, for example, to tell you who to target, etc.
Tim Karr – 1 million petitions gives us leverage and opens doors in Washington.
Time for questions!
Continue reading “Success Stories at Netroots Nation”