Friday, May 04, 2007

OPOs -- Like Nixon's Make-up, only Smarter

They're called Online Political Operatives -- or OPOs -- and they're redesigning political strategy in the 21st century, just as television changed it in the mid-20th.

The Washington Post profiles a few of this new generation of campaigners already having a major influence on the look and feel of the 2008 Presidential race:

"For these online political operatives -- or OPOs, as a few have taken to calling themselves -- the Internet isn't just a tool. It's a strategy, a whole new way of campaigning, a form of communication, from blogs to MySpace to YouTube, with far more potential than the old media of print and television. 'TV is a passive experience, and the Internet is all about interactivity, all about making a direct connection,' said Rospars, waxing expansive in the way all the OPOs tend to do."

But they may not be taken seriously by all the candidates. The Post quotes one OPO who says he's treated like "a mascot" and left out of the loop on important daily strategy sessions.

That could be the 2008 equivilent of Richard Nixon's 1960 decision to decline TV make up before his first debate with JFK. (WaPo)

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