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Simply put, I’m not the greatest at following politics. I know I should be much more educated in the subject not only on a national but also a local level too. This year I plan on becoming more involved in the wonderful world of politics.
While I certainly have a favorite presidential candidate right now, I don’t want to force my thoughts or views on anyone and will maintain a strict objectivity to what you are about to read.
The web is playing a huge roll in the primaries right now. As you know all of the candidates have websites and most of them if not all are part of social networks. Perhaps the most interesting of social networks is Flickr.com a website dedicated to photo sharing.
To my surprise not all the republicans had flickr pages although John McCain did have a social thing called “McCainSpace”, to give him credit, he does also have a MySpace page.
So as far as myspace goes…
Barack Obama – 238,798 friends
Hillary Clinton – 169,829 friends
John Edwards – 53,317 freinds
John McCain – 43,237 friends
Mitt Romney – 34,916 friends
Mike Huckabee-32,104 friends
Rudy Giuliani– 10,886 friends
Drew Anderson– 201 friends
If only 18-24 year olds could vote.
Almost every candidate has a MySpace and or FaceBook page. They also had all connected through at least one video sharing site, mainly YouTube.
While some republican candidates did have flickr pages, my interest was really sparked while looking at the democrats on the photo sharing site.
Below you can see the flickr pages for the candidates
Now my main interest is in profiling the candidates based on their social network pages. Basically you can tell a lot about a person by the way they have their sites set up. Since Obama and Clinton are the most interesting to watch of the bunch, I decided to take a closer look at their flickr pages.
Barack Obama’s flickr profile
I look at this profile page and I would like to point out several important things. There is a great profile and picture on Obama’s profile. I notice he must have some money saved up cause he does have a pro account that costs almost $25 for a year.
You will notice he has 895 contacts, that’s pretty good but, I would expect more really. On the right hand side there are some really nice testimonials from a good number of people.
Let’s compare Barack’s profile on flickr to…
Hillary Clinton’s profile on Flickr
Well… She has a photo of herself. She too must have enough money to pay for a pro account. I’m going to assume that whoever helps her with the flickr page doesn’t realize there is a profile section or perhaps they assume that people already know who she is. Since she has zero contacts I’m guessing that who ever runs the site doesn’t want to have to deal with people leaving all sorts of negative messages about Wal-Mart or something on her site. That’s probably why she has no testimonials too. I guess it’s a lot of work to reach out to a small group of people like this.
She may not have any contacts but, you will notice she is one of mine.
Not too much to say about this profile. Compared to Obama’s profile, Hillary has a lot of work to do.
On to the Photos
The photos in Barack’s flickr account are obviously snapped by a variety of people and cameras. I really like how a lot of the photos focus on the people supporting Obama. If you browse through, you can really feel the energy of the people. I love this shot of this dog. I think dogs are not only cute but charming too. Below the photo the words “Some rights reserved” along with iconic representation of the rights indicate that this photo can be used for non-commercial purposes, cool. I like that. You will also notice that there are 5 comments, I think most of them are talking about how cute the dog is.
Taking a look at Hillary’s flickr page you will notice something that is kind of a turn off right away, the photos are all marked with a copyright and “all rights reserved”, so I had to practice some of my artistic skills a little bit. I guess she might figure out a way to make money off these photos someday. Other than my skills as an artist, you will notice that there are zero comments on this photo, that’s not an odd thing. The odd thing is that none of her photos have comments as far as I can tell. Once again, I’m guessing that someone doesn’t want to filter through all the bad comments people will leave. She does have some support out there though so, I wonder why Hillary would wouldn’t want to hear what the people have to say? It sort of baffles me. Despite being able to look at some photos, Hillary Clinton’s flickr page is cold and weak.
Barack Obama has 13,936 photos in his Flickr account
Hillary Clinton has 3,081 photos in her Flickr account
Net profiling is very interesting when it comes to social sites. You can certainly tell a lot about people. I realize that Barack and Hillary probably don’t personally handle their social networking sites but, these social networking sites are a direct representation of the candidates.
One of the key parts to a social network is the social part, it’s not just “hey look at my photos”, it’s about letting people put their voice in and share it with others. Obama gets it, Clinton doesn’t.