: Well, the trends are clear according to the ARG tracking poll from Jan 19-21, 20-22, 21-23:
: Kerry: 27 – 31 – 34 – Up, up up.
: Edwards: 9 – 11- 13 – Up, up up.
: Dean: 22 – 18 – 15 – Pffffft.
: Clark: 19 – 20 – 19 – Yawn.
: Lieberman: 7 – 7- 6 – Oh, well.
Meanwhile, Newsweek says 52 percent of Americans don’t want to re-elect Bush.
It’s a wide-open race!
I believe this means that most Americans are just now waking up to the need to pay attention to all these other candidates. Our media made a Dean-Bush race a sure thing. Now we have to figure out what we think of Kerry and Edwards.
So things have not settled down yet, not by a long shot.
The Scream Meme: Over already
: I’ve said it before: We are bulimiac culture. We binge and purge. We binge on pop-culture trends (reality shows, blooper shows, tabloid shows…) and then get it out of our system and move on. I think we binged on the Dean Scream and got it out of our system and now we’re ready to move on. Some are complaining that we and our media paid too much attention to it; that’s what we do. Binge. Then purge. The natural order of American life. Having purged, though, we look for the next thing. Is that next thing Kerry… or Edwards… or Dean?
Edwards, in the wings
: I keep reading that Edwards is great on the stump. David Brooks said it on Newshour [via Andrew Sullivan]. James Carville said it [via Josh Marshall, who thought he was moo shu — tasty but didn’t stick to the ribs]. Can he get enough attention to make it a three-way after New Hampshire? I plan to listen to his speech tonight, thanks to Chris Lydon.
: I wish there had been more blogging of the blogging panel at Davos. The panelists can’t do it — they’re busy paneling — so they should have invited a few bloggers. As I said yesterday: Invite bloggers and they will blog. And if you want to know what blogging’s about, that’s another reason to invite bloggers!
Nonetheless, a few of the panelists have put up notes: Ito, Le Meur, Rosen, plus an official PDF summary.
: The best thing I saw in that official summary came from Dr. Hubert Burda, head of a major German publishing/TV/online company:
Traditional media companies are also watching the rise of blogging with an interested but anxious eye
: Fred Wilson writes about audience segmentation — a marketing need that is a technology business — inspired by Seth Godin’s discovery that you can look at Amazon and find out what kinds of things people who eat at Applebee‘s buy.
I dug deeper into that page and found, to my surprise, that the magazines Applebee’s eaters buy are not what I’d expect — Redbook, Parenting, The Star — but instead Playboy, Maxim, Sports Illustrated, and FHM. I thought it was a family restaurant. This says it is a sports, guys’ bar. I wonder where Applebee’s advertises. (The obvious caveat is that the Amazon data could be based on a tiny sample.) For your amusement, also note that people who eat at Spark’s — scene of a notorious Mob murder — have bought the book, 1,000 Places to See Before You Die.
This sort of targeting — finding out where to reach your market and what they care about and how to speak to them and, ideally, how to listen to them and even enter a conversation with them — is what will make weblogs and citizens’ media a commercial success… eventually. For here, you don’t just find out what words people searched for (the shallowest possible way to try to know a person) or what they bought (but just because I bought my kid a Barbie doesn’t mean I care about Barbies!), you find out what people think — not what some editor thinks but what the readers, the users, the market, the citizens, the people think.