Archive for August 4th, 2011

Epolitics.com: Five Years and Counting

In the recent hubbub over issues great and small, one milestone almost slipped by unnoticed: Epolitics.com launched just over five years ago, with an inaugural post published July 17, 2006. At that point, the site’s main store of content was the original incarnation of Online Politics 101 (in individual chapters, not yet in PDF form), but the first really substantive blog post followed soon thereafter. And remarkably enough, it’s a piece still relevant to discussions of the political and media landscape today, a fate I wish were true for everything written here.

Since then, my life has gone through plenty of changes — all or part of stints at three jobs, a run at self-employment (and resulting near-collapse financially), a lovely girlfriend here and there, the loss of two long-term pets occasionally featured in these pages, plus a hell of a lot of good times all around. But despite occasional gaps in the publishing record, E.pol has survived and thrived, and led to opportunities I hadn’t dreamt of before. Plus, it’s played host to a legion of up-and-coming thinkers in the online politics space. All of this was in an arena in which many, many websites burned briefly and then faded out, a fact that Google Reader makes very clear every time I log in — my feed list features digital-politics ghost site after ghost site, most barely remembered if at all.

For Epolitics.com, let’s let the numbers speak for themselves:

Current Number of Site Readers Per Weekday: 300-500
Number of RSS subscribers: ~1300
Number of E-Books Published: 3
Copies of E-Books Directly Downloaded from this site: 75,000+
Number of Daily Articles Published (including this one): 1335
Number of Guest Authors: 25
Number of Comments Left by Thoughtful Readers: 1912
Number of Spam Comments Submitted by Evil Robots: 1,026,926
Number of Industry Awards Won: 1 (Golden Dot)
Number of Articles Published that Gratuitously Reference Zombies, Robots or Pornography: [Our numbering system remains inadequate to meet the challenge]
Panel Discussions/Speaking Gigs/Media Quotes to which this Site has Led: 100+
Number of “Dates” on which I’ve Been “Asked” because of this Site: I ain’t tellin’
Amount of Fun I’ve Had Writing for this Site: Incalculable

What’s next for us? With another election year on the way, it’s time for a “Winning in 2012″ follow-on to the 2010 book, for a start, along with plenty of drive-by potshots at candidates, campaigns and advocacy groups in the blog pages. And, let’s hope for more guest posts and more guest authors, ’cause y’all all might just get sick of listening to one dude over and over. And to everyone who reads the site, THANK YOU! It would have dried up and blown away long ago without you.

Five years? See Mom, I CAN commit to something…every now and then.

cpd

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Gay Marriage Opponents Accused of Astroturfing; E.pol Gives Good Quote

Here’s something to check out: a former anti-gay-marriage activist is accusing the National Organization for Marriage of shady dealings on the internets, claiming that the organization formed a “SWAT team” of social media commenters to give the illusion of popular support to their positions online. In the process of writing her article on it, ClickZ’s Kate Kaye hit me up for a quote on disclosure’s importance as a part of social media best practices, so head on over and read it for yourself.

Now, plenty of advocacy groups try to get their members and employees active online, and the question of whether NOM’s activities cross any lines seems pretty much up in the air, based on what’s in the article itself. But see what you think, and also note good quotes in the piece from friend-of-e.politics Michael Crawford, an all-around stand-up guy.

cpd

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