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The conservative blogosphere is in a full-on feeding frenzy over an anti-Semitic, user generated blog post on My.BarackObama.com entitled "How the Jewish lobby works." The Obama campaign has, appropriately, scrubbed the post from its website.
At LGF, Charles Johnson sums up the usual guilt-by-association argument:
By the way, it is absolutely no excuse to say that “anyone can post a blog there.” Barack Obama isn’t running a Blogspot blog, he’s running for president of the United States, and his official web site is full of hatred and antisemitism.
Stories like this win tactical, one-day skirmishes but lose us the broader war. The damage to the Obama campaign will last 24-48 hours, and by then we'll have moved on to the next line of attack. But in the meantime, thousands more people will sign up to My.BarackObama.com. They'll form groups, RSVP to events, and yes, maybe write an off-color blogpost or two. They'll solidify their commitment to a community that's fanatically dedicated to electing Barack Obama president. And while the pundit-blogosphere may dismiss them, the people on MyBO are building the most fearsome volunteer organization in the history of Presidential politics.
The old school consultants will take heart in the blog feeding frenzy, and feel vindicated in their decision to run a play-it-safe, Web 1.0 campaign. So they'll use the clips from this to veto open systems and user generated content on candidate websites. And a few months later, they'll wonder why their website is so lame and why they're getting clobbered by the Democrats online.
Each time, the blogosphere could take pleasure in getting its scalp. But what's happened after each of these incidents? Has the Obama online operation been weakened? No. They keep growing bigger and bigger and bigger. And by continually harping on stuff like this, you're teaching our people to build lame one-way sites that don't raise any money or generate any activism.
There's a reason that we here at The Next Right have chosen an open format in which anyone can blog, not unlike MyBO. Because it works. It builds more traffic, more community, and more engagement. If someone posts something defamatory or racist or antisemitic, you can be sure we'll do exactly what the Obama campaign did: take it down.
I hope the media doesn't bite on this. I hope this story blows over. Because we don't need to discredit the My.BarackObama.com model. We need something just like it.
UPDATE: Micah Sifry has more thoughts on the organization that Obama has built in part through My.BarackObama.com. If you don't think this is a problem, you need to lay off the crackpipe.