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Democrats Government Politics

Obama's MySpace Drama 483

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the highway-robbery-i-won't-pay-it dept.
fistfullast33l writes "TechPresident, which is covering the use of technology by Presidential Campaigns for 2008, has a very interesting article on how Obama's MySpace page is currently the subject of an underground battle for control by the campaign itself and the volunteer who created it in 2004. Joseph Anthony worked with the campaign initially and grew the site to include over 160,000 unsolicited friends that the campaign could use to reach out to. It currently is the main Obama page in the Impact Channel on MySpace. However, as Obama's campaign became more centralized and formal, the decision was made to attempt to acquire control of the site from Anthony. They asked him for a price, which he offered up as $49,000 plus part of the $10,000 fee paid to MySpace for the Impact Channel. Obama balked at the price, and decided to start afresh rather than pay the money. The fight broke out into the open when Anthony posted a response on his blog to rumors that the campaign was spreading regarding him wanting to cash out. MyDD has more."
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Obama's MySpace Drama

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  • by Chris Burke (6130) on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @11:06AM (#18957983) Homepage
    Yeah, I was just reading the article about NASA and space-sex, so I misread the title. Reality is never as cool as my caffeine-deficient brain-damaged hallucinatory interpretation of reality. :(
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by AKAImBatman (238306) *
      See, I read the same thing. Except I read it as "Obama's Space Dream". I was rather disappointed when I realized there was a "My" in there. I might have considered voting for him if he had a good space plan. Instead I'm thinking of avoiding his Web 2.0-ness. There's too much crap in the world already to be having another President adding to it. :-/

      Anyone have a better candidate for President? How about Steve Jobs? :-P
      • by spun (1352)
        I read it as "Obama's Space Dream".
        Hehe, me too. Then "Obama's MySpace Dream," and I thought, "well that's sad," and then I read what was actually there, and I thought, "That's sad. And dumb."

        Anyone have a better candidate for President? How about Steve Jobs? :-P

        I'm a Democrat from New Mexico. I like Bill Richardson. Obama has very little experience and Hillary is, well, Hillary. Richardson is centrist, fiscally responsible, has legislative and executive branch experience, and Hispanic. He has a better shot
        • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

          by iminplaya (723125)
          ...and Hispanic

          Hardly relevant. I don't vote for anyone based on race, or color, or heritage. Only his record counts. Ask him what he'll do about the war, the patriot act, and prohibition, and maybe IP law.
          • by spun (1352) <`moc.oohay' `ta' `yranoituloverevol'> on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @11:44AM (#18958565) Journal
            Race may not be relevant to you and I, but it appears to be for most Americans. The Republicans have been trying to appeal to the Hispanic voter for a while now, and doing a much better job at it than they are at swaying African-American voters. So an Hispanic candidate is a natural for the Dems, is all I'm saying.
          • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

            by BewireNomali (618969)
            race and religion and gender are in fact very relevant - as well as the aesthetics that are commonly associated with what a president should look like. I imagine that to the average voter, those things, along with party affiliation, matter more than policy.
          • Re:Bill Richardson (Score:5, Informative)

            by valkraider (611225) on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @12:24PM (#18959269) Journal
            As far as the war, Richardson wants a complete withdrawal with ZERO residual troops by the end of 2007.
            Richardson on some issues. [richardson...sident.com]

            As far as Patriot Act:

            "It is important, especially now that Congress is evaluating the impact of the Patriot Act, that we send the message that New Mexico opposes the infringement of civil rights and liberties," said Governor Bill Richardson. "The United States can fight the war against terrorism without eroding America's precious freedoms."
            Governor Bill Richardson and Attorney General Patricia Madrid Oppose U.S. Patriot Act provisions [state.nm.us]

            Prohibition? I am not sure what you mean there. Do you mean the drug war? Well he signed the Medicinal Marijuana bill in NM, and he has pushed for drug treatment before prosecution. But he has also pushed for minimum sentences for dealers, and supports parts of the war on drugs. So I guess maybe he is in the middle of the road with regards to the drug war.

            I am not sure about IP.

            This site has a lot of information, although I cannot say if it is to be 100% trusted as I didn't look too hard to see who funds it. On The Issues [ontheissues.org]. It also appears that some of their information is a little out dated.

            Bill Richardson is the most qualified and most electable candidate we have at this time. Obama, or Clinton would be disasters.
            • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

              by mackyrae (999347)
              Richardson also has a marvelous foreign policy history. He's nearly on Carter's level when it comes to diplomacy. N. Korea specifically requested that he be the US negotiator because he's so good. He negotiated with Saddam and Cuba before. He's very good at getting back hostages and things like that. He has UN experience. Also, for the environmentally-concerned folks out there, he was Clinton's Secretary of Energy, and he has pushed a lot of energy-saving low-environmental-impact legislation through Ne
        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by Billosaur (927319) *

          I second Bill Richardson. As a former NM resident, I know how hard he worked/is working for the state, and the country. He has a broad depth of experience (foreign/domestic), can go toe-to-toe with anyone, and is frankly a lot easier to digest than your garden-variety Democrat. He seems to surround himself with good people too, which I think is half the trouble any President has -- the last few have been surrounded by "yes men".

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by mattatwork (988481)
      Couldn't Obama or his people send in the lawyers and ask the guy to take down the site or remove references on the guys site to being the official page? It seems like more of an issue with MySpace (and their parent company) than with If it's not a private account, they could just look at the guys friend list and try to recruit from his list....

      If the guy didn't like having the account taken from him, he shouldn't have posed it as the official site. And if his claims that it wasn't about money aren't tru
      • by Red Flayer (890720) on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @11:31AM (#18958385) Journal

        Couldn't Obama or his people send in the lawyers and ask the guy to take down the site or remove references on the guys site to being the official page?
        Actually, Anthony's page specifically states that it's NOT the official page.

        And if his claims that it wasn't about money aren't true, then where are the specific amounts of money coming from?
        The Obama campaign solicited a figure from him.

        It's not a cut-and-dried case of squatting -- Anthony had actually worked with the campaign on the profile. The campaign had password access, so that they could maintain some kind of control over the content just-in-case.

        It isn't about money, IMO. This guy built a significant amount of grassroots support for Obama, then found out that presidential politics is big business, and there's no room for the little guy. How would you feel if a 2.5 year labor of love was pulled out from underneath you? The campaign told him to make an offer... he did, based upon an approximated value of the time he spent on the profile this year. They scoffed, and went around him.

        I don't blame the creator of the profile. I don't blame the Obama campaign, either -- centralized control is necessary for presidential campaigns today.

        It's politics, sometimes people don't get what they want and feelings get hurt. Same as it ever was, same as it ever will be.
        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by lauchlinj (597515)
          I agree with your reply for the most part. The one thing that keeps getting overlooked by the majority of comments I've seen, is that Obama's campaign people asked Anthony to come up with a figure. If that figure was too much, the campaign people could have negotiated, instead of accusing him of blackmail. With all the unknowns here, I'd have to say, that a negotiation would've been better than the way this turned out.
        • by vux984 (928602) on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @11:59AM (#18958873)
          he did, based upon an approximated value of the time he spent on the profile this year. They scoffed, and went around him.

          And if he were a paid professional in stead of a volunteer working on it, that would possibly even be fair value.

          Suppose on a lark I bought a beat up motorcycle, and let you, a volunteer work on it for fun. Then one day I decide to race competitively, and offer to compensate you for your time.

          So you calculate all the hours you spent on it, lookup what pro pit mechanics are paid an hour, and suggest I pay you for 800 hours at that rate. I'd probably 'balk' at that too.

          Volunteers are usually paid nothing. The fact that the campaign was willing to buy him out was the right thing for them to do. Him deciding to value his volunteer time as if he were a contracted professional was probably out of line.

          That said, I agree. Its unfortunate that it couldn't be resolved amicalby, but that's life.
          • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

            by magarity (164372)
            Him deciding to value his volunteer time as if he were a contracted professional was probably out of line

            If you volunteer at a nonprofit organization doing what you normally do for pay then you can usually deduct from your federal income the value of that time at your regular rates as a contribution. So when this guy got a buyout offer it's perfectly reasonable to expect him to quote back professional rates.

            Besides, $49k to a serious presidential candidate is, what, less than 10 plates at
            • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

              by vux984 (928602)
              If you volunteer at a nonprofit organization doing what you normally do for pay then you can usually deduct from your federal income the value of that time at your regular rates as a contribution. So when this guy got a buyout offer it's perfectly reasonable to expect him to quote back professional rates.

              I think it depends. Maybe he did a lot more than was expected of him. It may have been a reasonable value for what he actually did, but if he'd been contracted to do it at professional rates they might neve
            • by Heywood J. Blaume (858386) on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @01:27PM (#18960293)
              This is false. You are not allowed to deduct time spent or professional services donated to a non-profit or charity. I don't have time to look up actual tax code, but the google search "IRS Rules donate in kind" returned this among many links: This Link [bargaineering.com]
        • by rolfwind (528248) on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @11:59AM (#18958875)

          I don't blame the Obama campaign, either -- centralized control is necessary for presidential campaigns today.


          I do. You don't take what isn't yours. It's a pretty old principle last time I checked. If it was really important, they would have built up their own MySpace page instead of hijacking someone elses.

          How you treat the people underneath you in your daily interactions says a lot about you. How you run your campaign is the same thing. I'll be looking at what Mike Gravel has to say now, thanks.
          • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

            by Red Flayer (890720)

            I do. You don't take what isn't yours.
            Funny, then, that you take Anthony's side, since the MySpace profile uses another individual's name... he took what wasn't his. When the cooperative situation proved unworkable, the sides couldn't come to agreement on fee for volunteered (!) services, and so the campaign took back what should have been theirs from the get-go.
      • by NoTheory (580275)
        No if you're a political candidate you don't have control of your own image. Since you're a subject for legitimate public debate, you can't simply issue C&D letters to people, just the same way you can't sue people for reporting news about you that you don't like. Now if this guy was misrepresenting himself, and say taking people's donations as the Obama campaign, that's fraud, and a wholly different situation (and the damaged parties are the people making donations). But the Obama campaign doesn't h
  • by passthecrackpipe (598773) * <passthecrackpipe ... m ['hot' in gap]> on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @11:10AM (#18958043)
    The guy wants to be president. He's a politician. And now some guy is surprised he is up to dirty tricks? Politicians are all scum, no matter which flag they wave. Remeber: Poly = many, tick = small bloodsucking parasite.
    • by hsmith (818216) on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @11:14AM (#18958105)
      I am shocked and appalled that a politician is doing whatever they want, acting like they are better than the proletariat, and taking what they desire. This is America damn it! This is like fighting in the war room!
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by eln (21727)
      Seizing a volunteer's "fan site" seems kind of sleazy, but then having the most popular MySpace page for your candidate being controlled by a random person, and therefore having no control over the content yourself, is also politically unwise. What happens when Obama does something the volunteer doesn't like, and the volunteer decides to use his page to spread vicious rumours about the candidate? If the page has already gained popularity as the de facto Obama MySpace page, that could be very damaging.

      On t
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        the volunteer's decision to try and cash out rather than cooperate with the campaign is a little short-sighted. If he really thought Obama had a shot at winning, he might have been better served to work with the campaign, maintain their official page

        Your comment mangles what really is going on here. The guy asked for compensation and to become a paid consultant to the campaign. The campaign countered by saying they wanted a one time payment and full control. He gave them an offer and they balked. He's b
        • Re: (Score:2, Troll)

          by Rei (128717)
          I think it's pretty scummy to create a "campaign site" to support a candidate, and then try to extort money from the campaign that you're ostensibly supporting.
          • by Dog-Cow (21281) on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @11:43AM (#18958555)
            Candidates spend billions on campaigning. What the FUCK do you think they spend all that on? Asking for money is the only sane thing to do in this situation.

            That's beside the fact that numerous posters already explained that he isn't extorting anything. $49k for a good portion of 2.5 years of work is cheap. Do you think the rest of his upper-level campaigners are working for free? They may not be getting cash now, but you better believe they expect 6-figure salary jobs in the Administration when he's elected. That, or government contracts or some other form of power/money.
      • by Billosaur (927319) *

        What happens when Obama does something the volunteer doesn't like, and the volunteer decides to use his page to spread vicious rumours about the candidate?

        You don't know the power of the Dark Side...

      • by RingDev (879105) on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @11:39AM (#18958491) Homepage Journal
        On the other hand, the volunteer's decision to try and cash out rather than cooperate with the campaign is a little short-sighted. If he really thought Obama had a shot at winning, he might have been better served to work with the campaign, maintain their official page, and use that leverage to angle for a cushy government job when Obama got elected.

        Except that they made it clear to him that he would NOT be part of the future of the page. The one time payment was just a trap, and the guy fell for it. No matter how crooked they were in going about it, they can destroy his credibility by saying he was just in it for the cash. Even if he had said no to the payment offer, they would have muscled him out one way or another.

        The polite thing to do would have been to split the different and give the guy some chump change for his costs and an invite to a few events as a special contributor. Would a few dinners really dent that $28 million dollar campaign?

        Anyways, who cares. Obama is nothing more than a republicrat. He's riding the Bush bashing coat tails like all of the democrats but he hasn't shown anything of substance for how he is going to do things better on his watch. Preaching to the choir that Bush sucks is great and all, but what does he actually bring to the table? 4 more years of political foot play at the tax payers' expense.

        Nah, if you want real change... Gore/Edwards in '08, now THAT would be an exciting 4 years.

        -Rick
        • Nah, if you want real change... Gore/Edwards in '08, now THAT would be an exciting 4 years.

          It sure wouldn't be an exciting 8 years. :)
        • by networkBoy (774728) on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @12:04PM (#18958971) Homepage Journal

          Gore/Edwards in '08
          I *really* hope you're kidding...
          In all honesty, the best suited people for political jobs often refuse them.
          A local radio host (Tom Sullivan) was asked to run for office at the last election (US assembly). He declined. Would have been a damn good Assemblyman, didn't want to do it, felt he "could do more good on the radio in a week than he could accomplish in an entire term in office" (or something like that). IIRC he was pushed to run for governor when we had a recall in CA. Didn't run for that. In the case of the president and vice president, I honestly believe Penn and Teller would be better than anyone who is currently even thinking of running. I could just see the veto stamp now:
          • Pork spending bill: VETO (bullshit)
          • IP bill: VETO (bullshit)
          • Repeal of some fragment of any orwellian law: Signed
          • Extension of the PATRIOT act: VETO (are you kidding me? BULLSHIT!)

          Ahhh dreams.
          -nB
        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by marvinglenn (195135)

          Nah, if you want real change... Gore/Edwards in '08, now THAT would be an exciting 4 years.

          So are they the giant douche or the turd sandwich?

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by kinglink (195330)
          What is with the democrats beating themselves?

          I've heard three candidates, Gore, Obama, and Clinton are the front runners, and all I can say is the republicans are going to win. Why? Because democrats are dumbasses.

          Let's assume Clinton gets the nod. Well now you have people who hated her husband, people who don't want a woman president, people who don't like her. Even the democratic female vote is cooling off on her. She'd be a hard sell to win if she was a man, having her as woman is going to make it ne
          • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

            by RingDev (879105)
            "...he doesn't have the quick thinking which will kill him in debates unless he over-reherses."

            Err, I'm not sure if you were watching the same 2000 presidential debate but I'm pretty sure that Gore was significantly lighter on his feet behind the podium than Bush was. Gore made mistakes in that debate, 2 biggies: 1) He underestimated Bush (which is really really hard to do), and 2) He over estimated the intelligence of the average American. The *sigh* is what really cost him personality points. He was attem
      • by Logger (9214) on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @11:42AM (#18958539) Homepage
        Short-sighted is to give a guy who probably has no idea what his effort was worth 24 hours to come up with a price, and then not at least try to negotiate. He shoots in the dark a $50k price. For a year of work that has been that effective as it has, that's a bargain compared to how much ineffective money is spent on political TV ads.

        Then instead of providing a counter offer, they simply accuse him of profitering and proceed to hijack the site from him. That is short sited anyway you look at. They are doing this because they thought he's an individual nobody. What could he possibly do to retaliate (read "typical big guy squish little guy think"). And now they are getting bad press because of it (read "short-sighted"). He's already sustained his loss (MySpace page was hijacked) which won't change his life really. They are only now going to begin to discover the loss to there credibility, which could potentially be very damaging. (Well, for the few people that are naive enough to give any credibitlity to any candidate.)
        • by powerlord (28156) on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @12:38PM (#18959475) Journal

          They are only now going to begin to discover the loss to there credibility, which could potentially be very damaging.


          Well ... I think "we" should all help them figure out just how much they may have damaged their credibility.

          If you're a MySpace user, after clicking on http://www.myspace.com/barackobama [myspace.com] feel free to click on "Send Message" and let him know how you feel. :) (remember to keep things clean and expletive free). Hey, he's even "On Line Now!" so he might reply. ;)

          Also, whether you Are or Are Not a MySpace user, feel free to click on "Block User". I'm sure those metrics might make their way to his attention (or at least the mainstream media's).
        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by multimed (189254)
          First time I've had to do this - just posting a reply to remove my moderation - I intended to mod this comment up but slipped. Is there any other way to undo a mod - the UI makes it too easy to accidentally mod something wrong?
        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by Red Flayer (890720)

          For a year of work that has been that effective as it has

          What, he grabbed some low-hanging fruit (people who looked for Barack's MySpace profile)?

          Did Anthony ever really expect that the campaign wouldn't eventually want full control of the page, especially since they'd already had problems with him posting incorrect content, and the fiascos with unauthorized staffers making huge gaffs and causing candidates credibility?

          Anthony KNEW he was going to have to give over control, or he was stupid. He wanted to

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by Paulrothrock (685079)

      Politicians are all scum, no matter which flag they wave. Remeber: Poly = many, tick = small bloodsucking parasite.

      I completely agree. Politicians are horrible. Why can't we go back to the good old days before annoying campaigns and bothersome voting. I just want to be told what to do by clergy and nobility, and have the strength to be able to do it. Why bother thinking?

  • by ILuvRamen (1026668) on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @11:10AM (#18958045)
    If you vote for me in 08, I'll do everything in my power to keep politicians off Myspace *crowd cheers*
  • by GMO (209499) on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @11:14AM (#18958095)
    And if, as he claims, they suggested a one-time fee, and then rejected his offer as an attempt to moneygrab, that is sneaky.

    But why would you need money for this, anyway? Compenstation for work already done?

    Anyway, considering the millions raised for campaigning, 50,000 is not so much.
    • It's an old trick used by companies to get rid of cybersquatters - ask the squatter how much they want for the domain, and then when they name a price, claim they're "acting in bad faith".
    • by pilaftank (1096645) on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @05:28PM (#18964379) Homepage

      When I first read about Obama's MySpace fight, it looked like Joseph Anthony had been wronged. After all he did create and maintain the MySpace account. Then I noticed the name of the profile. The profile name is not "PasadenaForObama" or "ObamaFans". The profile name is "BarackObama". Anthony knew (or should have known) that his claim to ownership of the profile would always be weak to nonexistent. The amount of time and effort he spent working on the account is irrelevant.

      The Obama campaign is not without fault, though. They should have never even solicited a financial offer from Anthony. Instead, the campaign should have offered signed books, buttons, shirts, and a handwritten thank you letter from Obama himself.

      As a contributor to the Obama campaign myself, I would have been annoyed to see my cash pay for Obama to purchase his own name. I am disappointed that the Obama campaign made the mistake of solicited an offer, but the bottom line is that Anthony was not wronged.

  • I would certainly hope the Obama camp understands that anything affecting anyone's main presence on the internet will end up all over the internet.
  • crazy (Score:2, Interesting)

    by cpearson (809811)
    It is hard to believe any Myspace account could be worth that much.
  • 404 Not Found (Score:3, Informative)

    by Pharmboy (216950) on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @11:17AM (#18958147) Journal
    Well, Anthony's comment has already been removed, along with the "page missing page".
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by JhohannaVH (790228)
      Here you are.... I KNEW they would nuke it, so I put a copy on my blog. Here's the text with the letter to techpresident.com

      Tuesday, May 01, 2007



      5.01.01 What happened to the Obama profile? Current mood: disappointed

      Friends,

      Many of you are probably wondering what happened to the Obama profile. The campaign, with the help of Myspace, have seized control of the profile without my consent, and are using it to refer traffic to a new profile they created. I have been blocked from having access to

  • This is what happens (Score:4, Interesting)

    by tkrotchko (124118) * on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @11:17AM (#18958155) Homepage
    This is what happens when an idealist gets mixed up with politics.

    They say politics is like sausage. You can't simultaneously appreciate the taste of sausage and know how it's made.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Carewolf (581105)

      They say politics is like sausage. You can't simultaneously appreciate the taste of sausage and know how it's made.


      Unless you are a realist. (?!)

      Welcome to the real world, step right in!
      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by Red Flayer (890720)
        Or unless you happen to be comfortable with eating animal byproducts. I grew up on a farm, I can eat a lamb sandwich while I give an orphaned baby lamb its bottle. No dissonance, just the satisfaction that I'm helping raise next year's lamb sandwiches.

        Hell, I eat scrapple. There's no way a bit o' sausage is going to bother you when you know what goes into THAT.

        The point is that familiarity with the political process makes it tolerable, for idealist and realist both.
  • by eldavojohn (898314) * <eldavojohnNO@SPAMgmail.com> on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @11:18AM (#18958163) Journal
    So, Obama has $19 million on hand from fund raising and donations [opensecrets.org] and he can't drop a year's salary to this guy for the work he's done maintaining a MySpace site? And if the guy invested $10k of his own money on good faith that it would help the campaign ... I'm shocked that he's not asking for more. I mean, isn't that chump change to Obama? And doesn't Obama have to dispose of that money before the election otherwise it's gotta go to charity (I'm not a politician, I forget the rules of soft money).

    I'm getting the feeling that I'm not hearing the whole story here. Nobody's doing anything wrong though, this is clear cut capitalism. The man has the only supply for the product ... Obama's campaign managers didn't like it so decided to make their own. Interesting drama but not really news.
    • by Billosaur (927319) *

      Agreed. The MySpace page is peripheral to the campaign, and while it's not in his best interest to ignore it (lest negative information be published about him), the fact is, if he makes too big a stink about this, it could become a media/Internet circus. He can run his own web site and in the meantime just keep the guy happy; what's 50K USD at this point?

      You ever get the feeling that the Presidential campaign starts wayyyyyyy too early?

    • by bjourne (1034822) on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @11:51AM (#18958709) Homepage Journal
      So, Obama has $19 million on hand from fund raising and donations and he can't drop a year's salary to this guy for the work he's done maintaining a MySpace site? And if the guy invested $10k of his own money on good faith that it would help the campaign ... I'm shocked that he's not asking for more. I mean, isn't that chump change to Obama? And doesn't Obama have to dispose of that money before the election otherwise it's gotta go to charity (I'm not a politician, I forget the rules of soft money).

      It is about principles. I have done alot of grunt work for a political party in Sweden, maybe it is different for the Democrats in the US, but in general, you don't get paid. You do it on your own free will because you want your party to succeed. A select few functionaries get paid, usually the minimum salary for their competence level possible and are still expected to do lots of volunteer work. I would be surprised if any of all the telemarketers that do the real work in Obama's fundraising campaign are paid anything above the minimum wage.

      Only when you get higher up in the party hiearchy can you expect to earn a decent living doing political work. But even then you are severly underpaid compared to what you can earn in other sectors. Even Bush and his appointed staff could probably earn a much higher salary working for a private company than working for the US.

      From that point of view, it really does not make sense that this person should be able to cash in on his volunteer work while thousands of other volunteer worker gets nothing. Sure, give him back his 10 grand he invested, but he really can not and should not expect to be able to earn money doing volunteer work.
  • by iminplaya (723125) <iminplaya.gmail@com> on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @11:20AM (#18958203) Journal
    Let this be a lesson. These people are no better than the ones they want to replace. I know I'm talking to the hand, But it has to be said. You have a choice. Make it a good one. If you all want change, then you have to bring it about. The standard bearers of the status quo won't do it for you.
  • Company discovers there is an individual that created some kind of web presence. Company does not like the content or direction of said web presence. Company tries to work with individual, gets nowhere.

    Today the usual outcome is a lawsuit which usually ends up going nowhere. Someone eventually gives up and throws in the towel, usually after both sides have spent plenty of money on advertising, lawyers, PR and whatnot.

    How this is resolved offline is very simple because we've had a thousand years of histor
  • by madsheep (984404) on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @11:21AM (#18958235) Homepage
    Yep.. big trouble a brewing at the polls because of this. If Obama can't reach out to those tens of thousands of 14-17 year olds and the tens of thousands of 18 to 20-somethings that aren't registered to vote on his MySpace.. what will he do? This may turn to political ruin for him. :(
    • by Golias (176380)
      There may be a perception that MySpace is a teenage playground, but the majority of users are over 30, and that has been the case for more than a year now. Try to keep up.
  • by Petersko (564140) on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @11:23AM (#18958245)
    Seriously, what's the point? There isn't enough evil in here to make it interesting.
    • by wsanders (114993)
      Yeah, to make it Truly Evil Obama would wait until he is elected, then arrest the guy under the Patriot Act.

      Hold on a sec - I have a phone call - Karl Rove is on the phone asking me for advice ....
  • Remember Obama (Score:2, Informative)

    by iminplaya (723125)
    Obama voted to reauthorize the Patriot Act. That is unforgivable, and he deserves nothing but contempt for it. To consider him as worthy is a mistake. If you want freedom, then vote for somebody who wants to protect it, unconditionally.
  • So lets break this down, a guy makes a myspace profile for some american political party. He spends a fair bit of his own money on the project. The campaign team make it known their interested in it but are such complete jerks about the transfer (last minute cancelling phone conferences,etc...) that when someone mentions the idea of a fee he jumps at it. When the refused any idea of financial re-embusement for his work they stole the account. One wonders if there is a data protection act in America since ex
  • Character (Score:3, Insightful)

    by outlander78 (527836) on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @11:38AM (#18958481)
    This shows Obama's character pretty clearly. He apparently has a sense of entitlement and lacks gratitude for those who supported him early on. Keep it in mind if you find yourself looking at a ballot with his name on it.
    • YA RLY cuz like the others are just so much better.

      Newsflash, Meridith, it's all just a big crapshoot, so why not vote for the person most likely to entertain you.

      Any serious policy happens in the house anyways. Amongst the 1000s of senators who run the country.

      Tom
  • Foolish (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Spazmania (174582) on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @11:46AM (#18958609) Homepage
    Way back in the day, I built a web site around the Ultima series of computer games. Much of it was scanned copies of Origin Systems' artwork though it also contained walkthroughs, hints and similar fan-supplied stuff from various authors. I'm a big fan of the games, so I built the web site in that vein. It became the central source of information about the Ultima games on the web.

    After a while, Origin came along and asked how much I'd be willing to sell it to them for. My answer? Tell me what you think is fair. After all, its their game not mine. They picked a number, I agreed and that was that.

    I could have picked a number that was representative of the manpower I put in to making the site. I could have gotten in to a big fight where they accuse me of copyright infringement and I accuse them of bullying, etc. etc.

    I could have, but I didn't. I didn't build the site to make money and at the end of the day it was their game, not mine. So I smiled and said, "thank you," sent them a zip file of the content and put a redirect on my web site that pointed to the site's new home.

    Joseph Anthony is nobody. Its Obama's myspace profile; Anthony is just a fan. He should have turned it over along with a list of expenses and said, "pay me what you think is fair."
    • You miss-understand who's the foolish one. The losses are MUCH greater for the Obama campaign than they are for this guy. He loses a little money, they lose a lot of people connected to Obama, some good will, and gain a little negative publicity. 50 grand is chump change to them. They also could have gained a little positive publicity by paying him the little bit of money he asked for.

      Basically, a really dumb move on the part of the Obama campaign.

      The situation just isn't analogous to yours. Politician
    • Re:Foolish (Score:4, Insightful)

      by Quiet_Desperation (858215) on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @01:33PM (#18960413)

      Joseph Anthony is nobody.

      Yeah, but, in theory, that's not supposed to matter under our system.

    • Re:Foolish (Score:5, Informative)

      by dantheman82 (765429) on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @02:00PM (#18960869) Homepage
      A few comments I read in the techPresident blog [techpresident.com] that sum up my sentiments well (from RickRussellTX)...
      Guys, step back and read the actual text
      This whole "Anthony is a greedy schmuck" and "the Obama campaign tripped up" debate is a bunch of malarky. Read what was actually written:

      (1) Campaign staffers had become concerned about the currency and accuracy of information on the site.

      (2) Anthony was overworked and suggested that they should make him a consultant.

      (3) They said they would rather have a one-time transfer, and he should name a price.

      (4) He picked a number. They said no and went to MySpace management for resolution.

      (5) MySpace came up with an eminently equitable solution. Mr. Anthony has been given the opportunity to build the site again with a different URL and full transfer of his friends list.

      It's as simple as that. He's not a greedy bastard. They asked him to pick a number. Obama staffers are not bumbling idiots; they tried a couple of approaches, things weren't working out, and ultimately they decided to run the site themselves.

      MySpacegate, indeed. Surely we can focus on the actual issues, and not this cyber-distraction?

If I have seen farther than others, it is because I was standing on the shoulders of giants. -- Isaac Newton

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