Meerkat and Periscope: A Boon for Opposition Research?


Down here in the e.politics bunker, we are slowly escaping the coils of a nasty summer cold — hence the low level of recent posting, despite tonight’s “Trumpapalooza meets the 9 Dwarves”, aka the first full-on Republican presidential debate. More on that this afternoon, Lord willin’ and the creek don’t rise.

Regardless of local travails, the latest Technology Bytes column has gone online at, and you don’t want to miss it. This week’s lead topic: will Periscope and Meerkat prove provide a huge assist to opposition researchers?

Of course, online video’s been an oppo team’s good friend at least since 2006’s “Macaca moment,”, and video-streaming’s not exactly a new technology either. But Periscope and Meerkat’s ease of use — plus the ubiquity of smartphones today — means that politicians have to assume that they’re on-camera at all times. Anyone holding up a phone could be broadcasting their every word, gesture and facial expression to the world!

Yet another reason that soon only robots will be able to run for office…though as we saw in Mitt Romney’s case, even that didn’t work out so well. Watch for oppo researchers to keep an eye on Periscope and Meerkat for chances to trip up an opponent…and of course, to keep a pre-emptive watch on their own candidate(s).

Check out the latest Technology Bytes for all this and more. Data-driven personalization? Republicans on Snapchat? What could possibly go wrong!

For more about video-streaming for politics and advocacy, BTW, be sure to read Shana Glickfield’s recent article on Periscope and Meerkat.


Written by
Colin Delany
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