(Community Matters) The Economist’s special section on Social Networking
Facebook . . . which celebrates its sixth birthday next month . . . is now the second most popular site on the internet after Google . . . over 350 million users . . . were it a nation . . the world’s third most populous after China and India
Orkut (India & Brazil), QQ (China), Skyrock (France), VKontakte (Rusia) & Cyworld (S. Korea), Muxlim (Muslims), ResearchGATE (scientists & researchers)
Superb tools for mass communication. They must demonstrate that they are capable of generating the returns that justify the lofty valuations
In the business world most hype around “Enterprise 2.0″, efforts to bring technologies such as social networks and blogs into the workplace to create huge benefits for business.
“This special report will examine these issues in detail [executives' concerns about social networking leading to non-working and the leaking of sensitive corporate information]. It will argue that social networks are more robust than their critics think, though not every site will prosper, and that social-networking technologies are creating considerable benefits for the businesses that embrace them, whatever their size. Lastly, it will contend that this is just the beginning of an exciting new era of global interconnectedness that will spread ideas and innovations around the world faster than ever before.”
(Community Matters) The Economists’ debate, Is Obama failing? Voting on the site says NO 65%; YES 35%
Many other presidents have found themselves in much more serious situations than Obama finds himself in now. He and his wife Michelle retain great personal respect. People like him and wish him well. They think that he shares their values. He has not been saddled with any of the demeaning scandals that plagued Bill Clinton’s presidency. He does not suffer from a character problem. Quite the contrary. The young people who voted for him in such large numbers are perplexed by his troubles but they are by no means ready to abandon him. His political troubles have not turned into personal troubles. This is critical. Personal failings and foibles fix themselves like glue in the minds of the public. Once a politician is regularly pilloried in the monologues of the late-night television comics he or she finds it nearly impossible to change the negative image. Unlike personal failings, political and governmental failings can be fixed.
Barack Obama is not failing. Failure in American politics is not subtle or nuanced, it is marked by a swift and deadly movement of public opinion from the political to the personal. At this stage in his presidency Harry Truman’s approval ratings were low and falling and he was the butt of jokes about his mid-west roots, his poker games and his cronies. One of many popular jokes went: “What would Roosevelt do if he were alive? What would Truman do if he were alive?” Truman suffered a humiliating defeat in the 1946 midterms but he still managed to pass the Marshall Plan and win re-election in 1948.
on the other side:
In many ways, of course, Obama has just doubled down on George W. Bush’s policies of bailouts, takeovers, expanded Fed powers and nationalisations. Some of the opposition to him reflects the public’s sense that we’ve been piling up spending and debt for over a year now, so he is being punished for his predecessor’s mistakes. But Bush or Obama, these policies take us in the wrong direction. After a crisis brought on by cheap money and distortionary subsidies, he is doing more of the same. In a recession he is adding debt, taxes and regulation to the burdens already felt by business.
And now the voters are turning against this sweeping agenda that seeks to make America a European welfare state. Obama came into office on a wave of good feeling, with 69% expressing approval and only 12% expressing disapproval. Now his ratings are below 50%. Obama’s approval rating fell 21 points during his first year in office, the largest first-year decline for any president since Gallup began tracking presidential approval ratings in the 1930s. Approval by independent voters has fallen from 62% to 45%. And even young people are leaving: The Politico/Insider Advantage poll showed Scott Brown leading among voters under 30 by 61% against 30%. In contrast, the 2008 exit poll showed 18-29-year-olds in Massachusetts voting for Obama 78-20.
(Community Matters) Steven has gone from outline to scenes