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Here Comes Everybody: A Review

Sounds like an interesting book to me.  I an intrigued by this part:

One of Shirky’s central arguments centres on the concept of mass amateurisation. In the same way that the printing press brought the written word to the masses, the internet is equipping anyone with an interest with the tools necessary to take on almost any task. In public affairs parlance, we might call the same concept by a different name: democratisation.

Anyone who has observed the effectiveness of well-funded NGOs backed by hundreds of thousands of supporters has seen its impact. This, Shirky would argue, demonstrates the de-professionalisation of public affairs.

We’re seeing that here in the gun rights movement.  Our political power has risen with the rise of the Internet and New Media, while our opponents have fallen.  If the premise of this book is correct, it will bode well for gun rights.  For the gun control groups, there is no “Everybody” to come.  I can count on one hand the number of comments and e-mails I’ve gotten supporting gun control.  Marshall closes with this:

While specialists will always be necessary to help clients navigate the vagaries of government, when it comes to making an impact, public affairs practitioners have a choice: adapt activities in light of the societal changes that the internet is sweeping forward or be tethered to methods and approaches whose effectiveness will steadily decline in coming years.

The NRA has been getting on board with this idea, slowly, but I think they understand it.  Our blog bash event in Louisville will be the first NRA Annual Meeting that will have bloggers, new media and Internet activists interacting formally with The National Rifle Association.  For many of us, this will be the first annual meeting we’ve ever attended, so it should be a good time.

The Brady Campaign, VPC, and many other gun control groups have yet not been able to capitalize on bloggers and new media.  In future battles, the Brady Campaign organization will become irrelevant, because they bear the burdens of a group that’s funded by a handful of wealthy donors.  The future of the gun control movement, and the only place it will find any real grassroots, is overseas.

2 Responses to “Here Comes Everybody: A Review”

  1. Robb Allen says:

    Yes and no.

    I honestly thought that with the spread of the Internet that American politics would shatter. As everyone has instant access to every last word Politician X said that we’d realize what a sham the whole system is.

    Instead, we get Free Republic and Daily Kos. And they’re fracking POPULAR.

    Us gunnies are using it to our advantage and it is working. The gun grabbers have no real support and have, for years, used a media monopoly to disseminate their lies using the money of a few wealthy people. Now that we can bring those lies to light, they’re seeing their support evaporate.

    Sure, they say people support stronger gun control, but when we turn around and illustrate what laws are already in place, those same people tend to agree with us.

    I think our jobs will get easier as more and more people plug in, but the Brady’s of the world still get free reign on the nightly newses and the AP which still many people get their information from, so the slog is still on.

    I’m ready? You?

  2. Weer'd Beard says:

    This also reminds me of my own transition from anti to gunny.

    I remember sitting in my college dorm room looking up “911 45s” on the internet (I learned quick it was “1911”) I had just shot a friend’s M1911A1 and decided while “assault weapons” were bad, and I had no idea why anybody would have one of those things for anything but fun-and-games, a 45 might be something cool to have.

    The wealth of of information that I found made the conversion fast, and motivated me to become an activist.

    In just a few months I learned EVERYTHING I thought I knew about guns was wrong. That was quite a realization, and was when I learned the nightly news was full of shit.

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