A trade journal of a still-emerging field, written by Adam Tinworth.

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A new subcategory has appeared under Travel in the list on the right. Florida is home to a series of posts I made while on holiday in, well, Florida 18 months ago. These lived in another blog, because I didn’t want to advertise my absence to London’s criminal fraternity, but really deserved a home here, too.


Well, a quick look at the voting figures for Blackheath ward tells us that Andrew came very close: only 40 votes separated him and the lowest-placed LibDem. Also, interestingly, Andrew got the best result amongst all the Labour candidates, beating out even the
deputy mayor
. Now, I’d like to suggest that Andrew’s attitude to communicating with his electorate, including his blogging, contributed to that (relatively) strong placement. Sure, “best of the losers” isn’t the best place to be in, but Labour suffered serious set backs all over the UK that night, and Blackheath lacks the same hardcore of “tribal Labour” voters (as political commentators term them) that sustained the party in other parts of the borough. Yet, he only lost his seat by 40 votes.

The fall of the Ladywell Labour candidates can be pretty much directly attributed to the Ladywell Pool campaign. The reason behind the similar wipe-out in Blackheath is harder to pin-point, but I suspect they were punished at a local level from the crimes of the party at a national level. That’s pretty ironic, really, given that Andrew had done more to connect with his community on a local level than pretty much any other politician I’ve ever met.

So, certainly not a failed experiment, but one that remains uproven, so far. The signs that he’s started something are there. One new Tory Lewisham councilor is blogging. There’s a Green and a Labour type at it too. Andrew Milton is still
at it
(although he engages less in the wider conversation than Andrew Brown). And there are many, many councilors across the country doing the same. The trail blazed by Andrew is clearly being followed by others, and still has the potential to change the way local politics is conducted and, by extension, the political landscape of the country. If I’d have been able to vote for Mr Brown, I would have done so without hesitation – and I’m extremely reluctant to vote for any member of the Labour party right now.
Why? Because he proved to me that he was a good politician at the local level, who genuinely cared about his voters. And that’s rare in this day and age.

Andrew himself is back blogging at Someday I Will Treat You Good. It’s well worth checking out. It’s interesting to see how his ‘voice’ has changed now he’s representing himself (and I detect a harder, more cutting edge to it, which I rather enjoy) and see which topics he chooses to write about. It’s good stuff, it’s political and it engages with the local readership. The experiment, I suspect, isn’t over yet.

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I’ve finally given in. Since I started this blog back in ’03, I have fiercely resisted having a “blogging” category on here. Too many blogs, I reasoned, spent all their time talking about blogging, in some form of self-referential circle-jerk. In 2006, that manifestly isn’t true any more. Blogs are being used for every purpose under the sun, from knitting, to gardening, to dirty
great trucks

And, frankly, I want to write about the interaction of blogging and journalism quite a lot in the next few weeks. It’s a subject that fascinates me – which is one of the reasons I started blogging in the first place – and it’s one that will grow in importance in my life, I suspect.

So, blogging‘s in the list now. You are officially warned.

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My efforts to bring this blog in line with the latest Movable Type features (soon to grow in version 3.3) are bearing fruit, but there are still some problems. For one, I can’t get Typekey authentication working again (grr). I also need to get the various plug-ins reintegrated with the templates.

But hey, I’ve got a nice hierarchical category/subcategory menu now!

Word of warning: the site is likely to stay with one of the default templates until the launch of the aforementioned MT 3.3, at which point I’ll be introducing a whole new look. How very exciting for you all.

UPDATE: With some quick help from Lisa at Six Apart support, all is now well again with Typekey. Hurrah!

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If you’re reading this blog on the web, you’re going to see some odd changes in the next few days.

I’m doing some work on the site’s plumbing, and a new design will follow.

For those of you reading via RSS – never mind. Nothing to see here.