Conservatives may be catching up with their liberal counterparts in building a Web-driven, grassroots campaign to push their agenda.There's more at the link.
The online insurgency-in-the-making revolves around the so-called tea parties, the anti-tax protests popping up around the country that they expect to culminate Wednesday -- tax day -- with hundreds of rallies nationwide.
The movement, which expanded over the last two months via the Web, is now relying heavily on independent media Web sites to track and cover the campaign.
The digital evolution of conservative activists comes too late to help John McCain, whose new media arm was left in the dust by President Obama's campaign. But organizers are holding out hope that this movement has juice.
"It's thoroughly viral," said Glenn Reynolds, the Instapundit.com blogger who hosts an online news show for the Web site Pajamas TV.
Pajamas TV is on the frontlines of new media coverage for the tea parties. The Web site already has covered some protests and is pledging to recruit an army of citizen journalists, working without pay, to cover the hundreds of protests on April 15.
Roger L. Simon, co-founder of the blog network Pajamas Media, which includes Pajamas TV, said the site went after tea party coverage because the mainstream media didn't.
He said Pajamas TV has more than 200 people registered to report on Wednesday's tea parties. He said they'll send in text reports, as well as videos and photos, to drive what he expects to be about 12 straight hours of online coverage.
"They'll be across the country essentially," he said, calling the operation a "big experiment."
"What will the quality of these reports be? Variable of course," Simon said. "But that's the nature of the beast."
The Web site currently features extensive footage of Tea Party protests, including interviews with activists and roundtable discussions.
From here, Simon wants to use the network of volunteer reporters for future assignments. Reynolds, who is also a law professor at the University of Tennessee, said he'll cover the protest in Knoxville and then return to co-anchor an online broadcast from his home.
* Common Sense Political Thought, "Mob Populism."
* Moe Lane, "I’d just like to note for the record ..."
* Nice Deb, "The Confused Critics of the Tax Day Tea Parties."
* Robert Stacy McCain, "Sully and the Tea Party Truthers."
* Paco Enterprises, "Protest is not a Leftwing Monopoly."
* Valley of the Shadow, "The Story of Icarus and the Democrats."