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Archive for May, 2010

The Twitter run-off in North Carolina

by henrycopeland
Tuesday, May 18th, 2010

With the NC U.S. Senate Democratic primary runoff one month away, candidates Cal Cunningham (@calfornc) and Elaine Marshall (@elaine4nc) are deadlocked in recent polls.

Is the race that close? With many pundits predicting low voter turnout, this election could very well be decided by the candidates’ social media clout.

Using Twiangulate, our tool for analyzing twitter friends and followers, we’ve looked at how the candidates stack up.

With 983 followers, Marshall is 28 followers ahead of Cunningham, who has 955 followers.

But Marshall, seasoned NC political insider, seems to have an edge in among influential followers, who include @KatrinaNation, the publisher and editor of The Nation magazine, prominent Durham-based LGBT blogger @Pam_Spaulding, Mother Jones reporter @SuzyKhimm and Politico reporter @davecatanese.

Cunningham, the fresh-faced JD and Iraq War vet, has a few interesting (and potentially influential) followers of his own. Prominent New York gay progressive blog @thejoshuablog follows Cunningham who is seen as the more conservative candidate.

It is no secret that Cunningham has the support of Democratic leaders in Washington and two Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee staffers, @ArjunJaikumar and @jasonrosenbaumare, among his biggest followers.

Both candidates have notable followers in common — NPR Political Editor @kenrudin, NC Public Radio reporter @LauraLeslie and former NC U.S. Senate candidate @JNealNC.

To see the full list of the two candidates’ most influential followers, check out this Gdoc.

And here are Cunningham and Marshall‘s most influential followers broken out in more detail. (Influential is defined by Twiangulate to be tweeps who are followed by at least 1.5 times more people than they follow and who follow fewer than 11k people.)

And, for fun, here’s a list of the people they both follow in common.

Apple’s iAd strategy still sounds rotten

by henrycopeland
Sunday, May 2nd, 2010

WSJ’s Emily Steel reported last week that Apple wants to charge launch advertisers on its iAd network $10 million apiece.

While some are still drooling over Apple’s prowess, I remain skeptical. Only the very biggest players will belly up to the table and risk a toss of $10 million dice. This is a great way to ensure there’s no early innovation on the iAd platform. (Contrast APPL’s strategy with Google’s for adwords, in which anyone with $5 can start experimenting and any ad agency with a spare hour can start explaining the product to its customers.)

The $10 million entry fee is another symptom of Apple’s fundamental misunderstanding of what makes the online ad market so dynamic and innovative. As I argued last month, unlike Apple’s hardware and software products, which are born of meticulous planning and rigid control of Apple’s vertically integrated design, manufacturing and marketing machine, online advertising innovation relies on lots of competitive players making daily incremental adjustments to each other’s moves, jiving and juking to create new products and metrics.

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