Saturday, February 10, 2007

It's Not About the Issues

As Obama gets set to announce his official candidacy today, it's time to evaluate the websites and packaging of the three leading Democratic contenders. For most of the voting American public, it's not about the issues; it's about the image. We're a shallow people, by and large. The candidates won't acknowledge that, but there's a reason they hire teams of handlers, pollsters, PR gurus, speechwriters, strategists and media specialists. Promises made on the campaign trail are rarely delivered upon. It's mainly fluff and bluster. So let's look at the packages.

Hillary Clinton's website trys very hard to be all about "a conversation," but she has yet to offer blogging abilities, promising that this "crucial part of our exciting national conversation" is forthcoming. Throughout the site she is rarely referred to by her last name. Everything is "Hillary" this and "Hillary" that. Even her official logo is simply "Hillary." We're also invited to join "Team Hillary." Too much. Too fake. Too desperate. Are you Oprah or Senator Clinton? Stop trying so hard to be my friend.

Barack Obama's website is the MySpace of candidate sites, offering a "" sign-up that allows you to blog about Obama, share funny stories with your fellow Obamaniacs and probably even download Obama's favorite music from iTunes. You can watch "BarackTV" and cruise over to the ObamaStore for all your Obama apparel needs. Obama's tone is serious and he wants very much to "work together." He wants you to roll up your sleeves like he does and start getting in the trenches. He's got a "real" look about him and a nice logo, too. He will gain on Hillary after today.

The John Edwards site is a disaster of web design, for starters. Apparently a templated design, the colors will jar you right off the bat. His logo is extremely weak and the organization of content is not very well planned out. To his credit, he's the only candidate to offer a prominent "En Espanol" button. His merchandise section is horrendous. (Example: nasty trucker hat above.) Step it up, Johnboy, if you hope to catch these two.

We'll tackle the Republican websites at another time. Where's My Jetpack? is not affiliated with any political party and sits on the fence until voting time. Also, we don't reveal who we voted for. That's why they have a curtain at the voting booth.

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  • Nice roundup of the different websites.

    I looked at Obama's social network earlier today:

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at February 10, 2007 at 1:57 PM  

  • Friends, let us look closer still.

    There is only one candidate in good conciousness I can support. Not for their stand on Iraq, border security, or even Medicaid. While these are all important issues, there’s one face that stands out above all others.

    Typeface that is.

    Flying in the face of conventional wisdom that says use either Garamond or Caslon for campaigning, John Edwards has chosen to go in a new direction. A Bold direction. One that has your future in mind.

    Make that, your Futura.

    It's a font that’s Versatile. Bold. Oblique. Just like the man. It's all things to all people. It doesn't have frills like serifs either. A font Harry Truman would be proud to know.

    No. When it comes to foreign policy, you don’t want a lightweight serif. You want a Heavy weight, maybe even and extended version for police actions.

    I give you John Edwards ‘08 – A font you can believe in.

    By Blogger Make the logo bigger, at February 10, 2007 at 9:46 PM  

  • Well thought out MTLB. On another matter, I heard today that Obamanistas are using his lack of experience as an alleged strength, positioning him as a Washington outsider, and therefore, we assume, more trustworthy. Problem is, I heard that line drive Carter into office, and I'm in no Hurry to suffer through that again. I'm still trying to forget the Gremlin, the Pinto, and the Vega -- plus much, much more.In fact, I'm still trying to forget Jimmy Carter (except habitat.)

    By Anonymous captain flummox, at February 10, 2007 at 11:06 PM  

  • I see your Vega and raise you a Pacer.

    By Blogger Make the logo bigger, at February 10, 2007 at 11:08 PM  

  • Captain Flummox:
    Carter's main selling point, though I was but a tadpole at the time, was that he was a nice man. And I remember thinking "gosh, my dad is a nice man, but no f-ing way should he be president and this Carter dude doesn't seem to have much more in the way of experience than my dad does." (NB: My father was in no way involved in politics and never held elective office.)

    By Blogger Toad, at February 11, 2007 at 10:27 PM  

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