At the beginning of the campaign we weren’t really sure, but by last night it was blindly clear. Twitter, and social media generally, in this election campaign do not matter – not in the wider scheme of things at least.
The blizzard of tweets last night, 154,342 in all (up on the second debate but down on the first) were in the main anti Cameron in nature– Tweetminister’s sentiment score had it as Clegg 3.13 (-0.5), Brown 2.99 (-0.15), Cameron 2.96 (-0.22) #leadersdebate.
Clegg was the clear winner on Twitter and on Facebook and Brown it appeared to be agreed had done better. It was Clegg one; Brown two; and Cameron three.
Read more on Why Twitter doesn’t matter at all (in this election)…
As the media attempts to canonise Nick Clegg, things are going from bad to worse for the Tories as Bell Pottinger chairman Peter Bingle calls the party’s election campaign the most inept in “living memory” in a leaked memo.
Can we stop a minute and take someone temperature? The Sunday Times went bonkers at the weekend (I mean literally) with its frothy front page headline “Nick Clegg nearly as popular as Winston Churchill”. One world war and one TV debate naturally being the exact same thing.
Worse than that it then confounded this piece of bad journalism by referring to this screamer again today saying that Clegg was in the “surprising position of having to talk down headlines that put his popularity on a par with Churchill” (without pointing out it was the culprit behind the headlines).
At the moment no one knows what the Lib Dem poll surge means. They today stand on 33% compared to the Tory’s 32% and Labour’s 26%, but the key question is will it last and translate to anything significant that will boost the party’s presence in the House of Commons much beyond its current 62 seats?
It appears likely that this figure will rise and it looks like it will hit the Tories hard. They are panicking and attacking Clegg (soft on crime/immigration et cetera) and warning that voting for the Lib Dems could keep Gordon Brown in power and the Tories out for a very long time.
Read more on Tory campaign "most inept… in living memory"…
Will it be historic? Will it be more than quips and point scoring? Millions are expected to tune in tonight and Twitter will light up as the three leaders prepare to debate on ITV in the first of the TV debates.
With audience predictions of between 12 and 20 million tonight could be a huge moment in British politics at a time when trust an enthusiasm for the process is at a low ebb.
The large audience could still turn it around for one party in what is the closest election for a generation. What is it going to mean for Nick Clegg and his Liberal Democrats? He is the unknown in here like Vince Cable in the debate of the chancellors.
David Cameron has been complaining about the strict rules imposed, which is as pointed out in The Guardian odd as his team helped draft them. He is after all our friend and wants to empower us all.
The Americans must wonder why we have waited so long to do this. They have had televised debates on air since 1976 ( a long gap between Kennedy and Nixon in 1960) giving us sound bites galore including the oft quoted riposte made by Lloyd Bentsen to Republican vice-presidential candidate Dan Quayle.
The debate comes at a time in the campaign when the main political parties face what The Times called “a wall of public antipathy amid a tightening race”.
And it is a tight race. With every poll that comes the Tory lead appears to be slipping representing itself on the periodical table as an unstable political element that allows no concrete predictions.
Read more on Will the TV leader debates change us?…
You’ve probably – being worldly-wise marketing types – already come across our new wheeze ripping its way across the net.If not it won’t be long until you do.
There’s a new party on the loose and it’s after your vote.Well I say new… but the Labservatives have been around now for 65 years. And as the new poster says, “We’ve had 65 years to get it right, so what’s another five?”
Read more on How to do online campaigning…
Last night’s debate #Askthechancellors had few surprises but it did prove to be a big hit both in terms of the 2m who tuned in at the peak and thousands who took part in what was the first mass social media political event in this country.
It is true that many many more watched ‘Eastenders’ (2m versus 9m), but not I think a let down as this was really the warm up for the three 90 minute leader debates.
I enjoyed last night’s event and it offered up some surprises even if for me, like most (I’m guessing), it confirmed my existing prejudices.
Looking at Twitter and the blogs this morning that seems to be the overall reaction with the Liberal Democrat Vince Cable showing stately wisdom (not to mention the evening’s sound bite with “pin-striped Scargills”) than his rivals Alasdair Darling and George Osborne (I know it wasn’t just me who thought he looked like the head boy).
Tory Osborne struggled, but to be fair he also scored with his death tax remark that Darling looking uncomfortable at times bought upon himself. But even that score wasn’t enough to dispel the overall impression that Osborne was the loser.
This was all confirmed by viewers who took part in an online vote during the programme that awarded victory to Cable with 36% of votes, compared with 32% for Darling and 32% for Osborne. Coincidentally this chimes with a YouGov/C4 poll before the show that gave Cable victory (do a lot of Lib Dems watch Channel 4?), but put Darling second rather than tying.
Read more on #Askthechancellors points to a much more social future…
So finally we appear to have a date.
For years now we have had to put up with Gordon Brown’s
dithering over when to call the election. But with time now almost up he
has run out of options. To the Palace he now must go.
Read more on Bring it on…