I would love to see their candidates [ed. Clarke and Dean campaigns] make an impassioned plea to keep the Internet free of interference from the entertainment industry. I would welcome this for two reasons.
1. First, I’m part of a constituency, like many others, who are looking for a candidate to vote for who supports our primary issue. Nothing unusual about that, easy to understand.
2. But as important, it would signal that the candidate is not beholden to the media companies. I would happily give money to candidates for ads that warn that the media industry is trying to rob us of our future, and explains how important it is to protect the independence of the Internet. Use the media industry channels to undermine their efforts to the control channels they don’t own, yet.
If you agree, pass this idea on to each of the campaigns and to other voters. Let’s use the Internet to keep the Internet free, in a positive way. Make a clear statement, I will only vote for a candidate who supports a free Internet. And it’s a open source idea, Bush, Kerry, Edwards, Gephardt, Kucinich, Moseley-Braun, Sharpton, et al are welcome to use it.
“Ask not what the Internet can do for you, ask what you can do for the Internet.”
Although I could not give a flying f*** about political campaigns and presidential elections, I am very much concerned about the Internet remaining free from political intereference. Dave Winer is correct in drawing attention to this pointing out how the symbiotic relationship between politicians and the media can spell danger for Internet as we know it today. Quite apart from the argument about the impact of pundit blogs on political discourse in the traditional media, Internet is undeniably changing balance of power in many areas in ways mostly unpalatable to politicians and the established media.
*There is a disclaimer that points out that he is speaking for himself and not on behalf of Harvard Law School or the Berkman Center for the Internet & Society.