The last ten years have witnessed two revolutions in political organizing: I will identify them as the big data transformation, and the big money transformation. The first is the revolution wrought by the internet and data mining: the use of the internet for organizing, fundraising, spreading news, and voter turn out. This is what is covered in what looks to be a fascinating book, Kleis Nielsen¹s Ground Wars: Personalized Communication in Political Campaigns. The second is the revolution wrought by law, namely, the Supreme Court. In a series of cases culminating in Citizens United, the Supreme Court struck down several democratically passed laws designed to cabin the direct political influence of corporations.
I am particularly interested in observing the interaction between these two changes, both of which have implications for the institutions of campaigns.
The Big Data change gives relative power to two groups: Continue reading