No sooner had Derek Draper trumpeted the brave new world of Labour blogging that along came his erstwhile mentor & uber spinmeister, Peter Mandelson, to stamp all over Derek's honeyed words (http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/blog/2009/feb/12/digitalmedia ).
Andrew Sparrow notes in his post that during yesterday morning's "bloggers' breakfast" (couldn't make it guys, but thanks for the invitation), Mandelson delivered "a revised version of his thinking about campaigning in the age of the internet."
Ah, I see. So what do you have in mind, Peter? Sparrow quotes New Labour's very own Marie-Antoinette: "We are still going to need carefully crafted, repeated messages. The difference is that the message has got to be richer, has got to be more original, it has got to be more creative and there's got to be more plurality, from a greater range of people."
Further on in his post, Sparrow again quotes Mandelson: "We will still have to have slogans, we will still have to have soundbites, well-chosen, and they need to be repeated."
In other words, same old, same old, only online.
Sparrow alludes to the Obama campaign & its use of new technology, pointing out that "recognisably old-fashioned ways" were also deployed so as to develop an army of volunteers to distribute leaflets, knock on doors, etc. However, the huge difference is that, after eight years of Bush, Obama appears to offer real change. New Labour, in office for nearly 12 years, & seen --even by sympathetic commentators --as hapless incumbents as the economy goes further south, offers...well, what exactly?