I’ve been following the progress of Wonkosphere and talking about it for a while now [here, here, and here]. If you’re not familiar with Wonkosphere, it’s a website that tracks the buzz generated by candidates on political blogs. It reports buzz as a percentage of the total buzz by conservative, liberal, and independent bloggers. It also reports the tone of the posts, so you get more than just who is being talked about. So it appears that the buzz share is a predicter of national polling results According to Kevin Dooley of Wonkosphere, it’s not the total percentage of buzz share that is predictive of polling results, but the change in buzz share that predicts where national numbers are going. So are blogs affecting politics (as many have suggested) or are they just reflecting social trends?
Kucinich is doing fairly well today with buzz share, coming in at #3 among Democrats. He spiked a few days ago when his UFO comments incited a conservative love fest of crazy-elf-hippy remarks. Democracy for America held the 2008 Pulse Poll to gather data about people’s choice for who should be the 2008 Democratic contender. The results put Kucinich at a fairly decisive #1, beating out the phantom Al Gore (aka Newest Nobel Turd) and John Edwards. DFA consists primarily of Progressive Democrats, though, so you can’t generalize it to the population at large. However, these people tend to be rather vocal and active politically, so they may start to rub off. It’s a daunting task, though, counteracting the media brick-brain effect (i.e. making your brain into a gray brick).