The 2008 campaign is already in deep meta

Jay Rosen explains how he and Arianna Huffington are organizing bloggers to cover the 2008 presidential campaign, with a dozen or more covering each candidate.

It would be great for one of our contributors to ride the bus with John McCainÖ once. But weíd rather have a high school English teacher with some writerly flair and a fascination for McCain who sifts the news for clues to the evolution of his public character. Meanwhile, another contributor might stick with a single factor affecting McCainís chances: what movement conservatives think, say and do. A third could observe on McCain and the environment, sticking to that beat. Another might look at McCain and his tangled relationship to veterans of the United States military. In some cases, a contributorís expertise might “make” the beat. If you make ads for a living (and youíre eloquent) weíd welcome your take on McCainís ad makers. If youíre a nurse and you want to write about health care, yes.

This effort may be better organized and connected than most blogging efforts, but it’s just the beginning of a full-on blogging circus in 2008. And then there’s the meta-coverage: All the traditional news media reporting on what everyone is writing and reading in the “blogosphere”. And the meta-meta-coverage: bloggers writing about what the “mainstream media” is saying about the effect of blogging on the presidential race.
We’re nearly a year from the first primary and the media are already talking about the Clinton 1984 mashup, the vandalism of Edwards’s Second Life headquarters, and the hacking of McCain’s MySpace page.
Originally published on my blog at JupiterResearch.