Digital Politics

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Digital Politics is a show about the intersection of politics and the Internet. As the traffic cop in the middle, Karen Jagoda brings together Republicans, Democrats, Independents and those who prefer not to say in a lively discussion about how campaigns are taking advantage of web tools. Joining us are guests from the world of politics, academia, web publishing, traditional media – from bloggers to fundraisers, candidates to grassroots organizers. We peel back the layers to reveal how the Internet is changing the way candidates run for office, promote ballot initiatives, and mobilize voters. Join the party at Digital Politics, on Thursday afternoons and check out for more information.

Recent Shows
Impact of Super Bowl Ads on Mass Audiences – Download

Today’s guest on Digital Politics is Glenn Kessler, CEO, HCD Research. Topics include what lessons the political community can learn from the reactions to the Super Bowl ads, how social media played a role before, during and after the game and the controversial ads that did and did not air.

Published: February 11, 2010

Green Jobs Slow to Blossom – Download

Today’s guest on Digital Politics is Joseph Kalkstein, President of Global Solar Ventures. Topics include being a green energy entrepreneur in this economy, jobs created by clean energy, financing green energy projects, and incentives for implementing a smart energy plan.

Published: February 4, 2010

Homer Simpson and Friends – Download
Today’s guest on Digital Politics is Dan Weiner, Vice President Sales, FOX Audience Network. Topics include online targeting to a mass audience and web options political strategists need to consider particularly with the expected increased demand for local television ad time for 2010 campaigns.

Published: January 28, 2010

Crisis Camp Haiti – Download
The guest on this show is Gordon Thomas, a software engineer in San Diego. Topics include the work Gordon and his group of fellow self-described ‘techies’ have taken on to help earthquake victims and first responders in Haiti. From maps to mobile apps for language translation, this creative movement is demonstrating the power of organizations like in building solutions quickly.

Published: January 22, 2010

Frustrated Voters Take Action – Download
Today’s guest is Summer Nemeth, founder and CEO of Imagine Election, a new, nonpartisan online voter guide. Topics include the shift to a voter focused online world, methods of educating voters about state/local candidates and ballot initatives, and how frustrated voters are finding ways to take action.

Published: January 14, 2010

Mobile Apps for Civic Engagement – Download
Today’s guests are Kurt Daradics and David Kralik of CitySourced powered by FreedomSpeaks. Topics include who is using mobile apps, how can an app encourage civic participation, and interest in the VC community for companies developing political and advocacy related apps.

Published: January 7, 2010

Leveraging the Internet to Target voters in 2010 – Download
My guest today on the Digital Politics podcast is Sara Taylor, founder of Resonate Networks and former Director of the White House Office of Political Affairs in the George W. Bush administration.

Focus today is on optimizing political and advocacy campaign media budgets, using online ads as well as mobile to reach voters, and innovations in targeting constituents across all media.

Published: December 17, 2009

Holiday Spirit and Online Activism – Download
Guest today is Steve Daigneault, Vice President, M+R Strategic Services. Focus is on the use of the web by advocacy groups, what works and what doesn’t, and how the state of the economy is changing the way organizations raise money and motivate volunteers.

Published: December 3, 2009

Ad Dollars and Health Care Reform – Download
My guest today on the Digital Politics podcast is Evan Tracey, founder and president of Washington, DC based Campaign Media Analysis Group.

Focus this week is on the organizations behind the health care reform debate ads, how much is being spent and who is being influenced.

Published: November 19, 2009

Social Platforms for Pursuing Activists Online – Download
My guest today on the Digital Politics podcast is Peter Slutsky, Strategic Relations Manager at Ning.

Focus this week is custom social media networks, increasing engagement with web content, and how candidates and advocacy groups are using cutting edge tools like Ning to build communities of supporters.

Published: November 12, 2009

Paranormal Activity – Download
Guest today is Jordan Glazier, CEO Eventful, talking about the demand campaign for the new movie Paranormal Activity.

Published: October 30, 2009

Political Humor in Trying Times – Download
Guest today is Stu Kreisman, Emmy award winning writer/producer and blogger on Huffington Post.

Focus this week is political humor and the need for candidates to show their lighter side.

Published: October 29, 2009

Engaging The Community – Download
Guest today Phil Noble, founder, PoliticsOnline talks about South Carolina politics, Joe Wilson and his fund-raising efforts, and the impact of disruptive technology on the political process.

Published: October 8, 2009

Growth of online expertise – Download
The guest today is David Kralik, California Director, Engage.

Focus this week is on the market for online political consultants, the role these consultants will play in the strategic direction of campaigns, and how online experts will work with the traditional media experts.

Published: October 1, 2009

Power of the Online Community – Download
The Digital Politics podcast this week features John Marelius, political reporter for the San Diego Union-Tribune. Topics include how the state and local 2010 races in California are shaping up and the impact of the online community in these races and ballot initiatives.

Published: September 24, 2009

Figures Don’t Lie – Download
The Digital Politics podcast this week will focus on measureing the impact of social media. My guest today is Shabbir Safdar, founder of Virillion. Topics include which web analytics are most predictive of voter behavior and measuring the success of online social media activities.

Published: July 16, 2009

Role of Visionaries – Download
The Digital Politics podcast this week will focus on those with a passion for looking into the future. My guest is Read Scott Martin, Partner, WIT Strategy. Topics include trends in political communications, where digital rights management is headed, and how to get clients to think beyond the next quarter.

Our good friend and colleague Nicholas Givotovsky was killed in a tragic accident on July 3. Nick’s enthusiasm and vision for the digital future were legendary. Read not only worked with Nick on a recent tracking project, he also attended high school with him.

Published: July 23, 2009

Politics Is A Contact Sport – Download
This week features Colin Delany, founder and chief editor, and Ben Chodor, president, Stream 57. Topics include web casting, fund raising and capitalizing on news events.

Published: September 17, 2009

Candidate as Comedian – Download
This week’s Digital Politics focuses on political humor with guest Larry Ward, president, Political Media, a DC based political consulting firm.

Topics include public perception of political humor, how the web has changed the way jokes and funny videos are shared and what kinds of humor work best in political ads.

Published: June 11, 2009

Water Water Everywhere – Download
The Digital Politics podcast this week focuses on how advocacy groups, businesses, and public agencies are using the web for outreach on issues related to water. Mandatory water use restrictions started June 1 in San Diego and the debate heats up regarding conservation, water sources and recycling.

My guest today is Sara Katz, founder and president, Katz & Associates, a communication firm based in San Diego, specializing in programs for major public works projects, social awareness programs and controversial public policy issues.

Topics include how government agencies are using the web to educate and raise awareness, how grassroots efforts are influencing public policy on water use, waster water management, and alternative water sources, and the role online tools play for water advocates in promoting awareness, voter turnout and fund raising.

Published: June 4, 2009

California Campaigns 2010 – Download
The digital Politics podcast this week focuses on how California candidates for Congress and governor as well as supporters of ballot initiatives have started using the web with an eye to November 2010.

My guest today is Francine Busby, candidate for Congress in 2010 in the 50th district of San Diego.

Published: May 28, 2009

Voter Engagement with the Web – Download
The Digital Politics podcast this week focuses on changes in the political scene as a result of the emergence of social networks, twitter, and mobile web applications.

My guest today is Colin Delany, founder and editor of

Topics will include building on the momentum created in social networks, development of apps for social networks, and the best social net activities for local and state campaigns.

Published: May 21, 2009

Future of Political Advertising – Download
The Digital Politics podcast this week will focus on how political advertising is changing in the age of direct communications between candidates and voters.

My guest today is Ira Teinowitz, freelance writer and the former Washington bureau chief of Advertising Age.

Topics include new ad units, ads on social networks, and candidates as brands.

Published: May 14, 2009

Viral Growth of Social Networks – Download
My guest today is Michael Turk, VP of Industry Grassroots for the National Cable & Telecommunications Association. Topics include tricks that social networks are implementing, trends in social net functionality, and managing a presence on multiple social networks.

Published: May 7, 2009

Emergence of Ad Networks – Download
The Digital Politics podcast this week focuses on ad networks that offer techniques for political and advocacy campaigns to effectively communicate with their constituents.

My guest today is Jeff Dittus, CEO and co-founder, Campaign Grid, an online advertising network for candidates and causes. Topics include how lessons learned by candidates in 2008 are being applied to advocacy groups, what kinds of targeting work best to find voters online, and performance based advertising.

Published: April 30, 2009

The Art and Science of Targeting Voters – Download
The Digital Politics podcast this week will focus on how web tools can be used more effectively to identify likely contributors, volunteers, supporters, and voters.

My guest today is Matthew Dybwad, Senior director of Internet Strategy, emotive LLC, a Virginia based Internet consulting firm. Matthew moderated a panel at the IPDI Politics Online Conference in DC this week and we will be talking about where the political insiders are seeing the most potential for the next round of online campaigns.

Published: April 23, 2009

Online Branding – Download
The Digital Politics podcast this week focuses on how candidates and advocates brand themselves online, the role of the web site and social nets in extending the brand, and how races in 2009 are applying the new rules of campaign engagement. Guest is Brian Keeler, VP of Politics and Advocacy for VShift.

Published: April 16, 2009

Turning Point for Digital Media – Download
This podcast focuses on where the money was spent online in campaign 2008. The social networks, YouTube and blogs were only part of the story. Online advertising, search and targeting strategies had measurable impact. Guest today is Kate Kaye, senior editor, ClickZ, and author of the just released book “Campaign ’08: A Turning Point for Digital Media” available from Amazon.

Published: April 9, 2009

Getting Some of That Obama Magic – Download
My podcast this week will focus on how Republicans as well as Democrats are looking at lessons learned in the Obama 08 campaign and particularly their use of the Internet.

My guest today is Rob Kubasko, Campaign Solutions, pioneer in the use of the Internet in political campaigns and web strategists for McCain 08.

Published: April 2, 2009

RNC in Transition- Cyrus Krohn – Download
Focus of this show is on how the Republican Party used the web in 2007 and 2008, lessons learned, and predictions about how the RNC will use the Internet in the future. Guest is Cyrus Krohn, former e-Campaign Director of the RNC. See Krohn’s posting on for more background.

Published: March 19, 2009

The Permanent Campaign – Download
The Digital Politics podcast this week focuses on targeting contributors, maintaining contact with supporters and appropriate web activities for candidates, elected officials, and advocates who have their eye on election 2010.

My guest today is Ben Katz, CTO, Aristotle, and online fundraising expert.

Published: March 12, 2009

Speaking Directly to the American People – Download
My guest today is Glenn Kessler, president, HCD Research talking about results from his national study conducted during President Obama’s speech to Congress. The results from this survey of 1,500 self-reported Democrats, Republicans and Independents can be found at

Published: February 26, 2009

The California Governor’s Race – Download
The Digital Politics podcast this week will focus on the field of candidates emerging for the California governor’s race.

My guest today is John Marelius, political reporter for the San Diego Union-Tribune. Check out his article from February 15, 2009: Rivals are lining up now to run state in ’11; Wide-open race; has old pols, newcomers

Send comments, questions, and suggestions to me at on how we can make the podcasts more relevant and useful.

Thanks for listening.


Published: February 19, 2009

Privacy in the Age of Onlne Activism – Download
The Digital Politics podcast this week is focusing on expectations for privacy and the reality of the digital trail. My guest today is Shaun Dakin, founder of Citizens for Civil discourse. Topics include privacy rights, impact of opt-in/opt-out, and the First Amendment rights of candidates, advocates and supporters.

Published: February 12, 2009

Advocacy, Transparency and Online Activism – Download
The Digital Politics podcast this week is focusing on the impact of the Internet on activism. My guests today are Alan Rosenblatt, Center for American Progress Action Fund, and Larry Irving, Irving Information Group. Topics will include expectations of the Netroots Nation, transparency in the digital age, and changes activists might expect to see in the Obama administration.

Published: February 5, 2009

All Politics is Local: Tab Berg and Brent Blackaby – Download
Guests are Tab Berg of TABcommunications and Brent Blackaby, founder of Blackrock Associates. Topics will include trends seen in campaign 2008 that we will see in state and local races in 2009 and 2010 and how voters’ expectations have changed as a result of the 2008 presidential race.

Published: January 29, 2009

Randi Zuckerberg and Chris Kelly from Facebook and Scott Heiferman, CEO and founder of – Download
My guests today are Randi Zuckerberg and Chris Kelly from Facebook and Scott Heiferman, CEO and founder of

Topics will include the role of social nets in the Inauguration celebration, how social network members are participating in the formation of the Obama administration and what role social nets will play in future national, state and local campaigns.

Published: January 16, 2009

James Fowler and Lee Brenner – Download
My guests today are James Fowler, Associate Professor of Political Science, University of California, San Diego and Lee Brenner, Political Director, MySpace.

You may have seen reference to the Fowler/Christakis report Dynamic Spread of Happiness in a Large Social Network published recently in the British Medical Journal and featured in print and network news and on the Colbert Report.

Looking at communities from a theoretical and online view, the topics today will include the contagious nature of happiness, impact of peers online and off, and the power of online social networks in the political process.

Published: January 8, 2009