Howard Dean & Meetup.com
In NYC two weeks ago, over five hundred people showed up at a bar to talk about Howard Dean. What was remarkable was that the event wasn't organized by Dean for America, but instead by a website: Meetup.com. Joe Trippi, Dean's campaign manager, said to the NY Times "I've never seen anything like that, with no advance people, totally self-organized by a bunch of citizens." Once they crossed the 300-person threshold, the campaign made a decision to send the candidate himself.
Fairly new to the scene, Meetup tries to connect people in local places with similar interests (not just politics). In Portland, already 130 people have signed up to be notified of the next Howard Dean meetup on April 2. You can bet that Meetup is the vanguard of a new kind of grassroots organizing - spontaneous, bottom-up, and Net-centric. Ladies and gentlemen, here comes the future...
Read the NY Times story: "Like Online Dating, With a Political Spin," March 13. (free registration required)
This item was originally posted at MandateMedia.com on March 27, 2003.
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