Sunday, June 04, 2017

Remember when we used to hear about the Democrats’ great database?




We’ve been getting used to the Democrats looking for excuses to explain the 2016 loss.  It’s getting rather silly, but what do you expect from people who were convinced they were headed to a big victory party on Election Night?  Some had bought new dresses and probably tickets to the inauguration.
We understand from Shattered, the book about the Clinton campaign, that they were popping champagne that evening.
Mrs. Clinton said a lot of things the other day about her 2016 loss, from Russia to Comey to even blaming her party:
Clinton said Wednesday in an interview with Recode’s Kara Swisher that once she became the Democratic nominee, she inherited “nothing.”
The Democratic National Committee’s data, she said, “was mediocre to poor, nonexistent, wrong. I had to inject money into it.”
Her comments drew swift rebuttals from some Democratic operatives who built, or worked with, that data.
It left me a bit confused, because I used to hear that the Democrats had the best database in the world.  Don’t you remember all of those articles about how the Obama Team were just a bunch of tech geniuses in reaching voters through social media?  What about all of those stories about the GOP having to do its social media operations to catch up with the Democrats?
Here is one:
After the voters returned Obama to office for a second term, his campaign became celebrated for its use of technology – much of it developed by an unusual team of coders and engineers – that redefined how individuals could use the Web, social media, and smartphones to participate in the political process. A mobile app allowed a canvasser to download and return walk sheets without ever entering a campaign office; a Web platform called Dashboard gamified volunteer activity by ranking the most active supporters; and “targeted sharing” protocols mined an Obama backer’s Facebook network in search of friends the campaign wanted to register, mobilize, or persuade.
But underneath all that were scores describing particular voters: a new political currency that predicted the behavior of individual humans.
The campaign didn’t just know who you were; it knew exactly how it could turn you into the type of person it wanted you to be.
So what happened to all of these people?  Where did all of these experts go?  Did they go to Senator Sanders or refuse to work for Mrs. Clinton?  I don’t know, but Democrats can’t be happy that they are now blamed along with everybody else but the candidate.
It won’t be long before Democrats are singing Donny Osmond’s “Go away little girl…”
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