NewsBreak Quote: Obama New Media in the Philippines

I am currently in the Philippines working with the Computer Professionals’ Union. Last week we did two events in Manila on new media and the 2010 elections. There was a great speaker line-up: blogger Tonyo Cruz on the Filipino online environment, CPU’s International Coordinator Rick Bahague on the start of electronic voting, Friendster‘s Narciso Reyes on how to promote a candidate on that platform, and yours truly on the Obama new media experience. Here’s an article from the Filipino newspaper NewsBreak, reporting on the event:

      It is no secret that US President Barack Obama won partly for using new media in his 2008 campaign.New media is defined by Obama New Media Operations Manager Mary Joyce as a media message created, produced and read by the people. This means media found on the internet, and text messages via mobile phones.

Social networking sites have linked internet users to Obama’s webpage in order to know his policies and actively participate in discussions. But there is one key aspect the Obama campaign team is most proud of: getting online donations for the campaign that amounted to $500 million.

So what if they paid a dollar to the Obama campaign?

Joyce told that the psyche behind donating money is that they feel they belong to the campaign. Joyce is also co-founder of, a volunteer organization helping activists around the world to use Internet and mobile phones to increase the impact of their message.

“Our marketing mantra was ‘own a piece of this campaign,’” she said. In turn, Obama supporters felt they had a say and the power to promote their candidate, and they felt more entitled to voice out what they feel and need.

Recognizing the importance of people’s donations, Obama even mentioned in his November 7, 2008 speech that his victory was built by working men and women who donated small amounts–from $5-$20–to the cause.

Joyce said that Obama did not have access to funds from the traditional elite of America so, “we had no choice but to campaign online, asking for donations from Middle America.” Read more…

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