The Meme vs. The Campaign Ad
So on Tuesday, governor Romney made a gaffe, which turned into a meme, which now lives on the internet in various ways, shapes and forms.
At the time, the folks at American Bridge, the Democratic political action committee, were thinking on their feet. They very quickly purchased the domain bindersfullofwomen.com, and turned the spontaneous reaction into an institutional campaign resource.
While the BindersFullofWomen Tumblr, not to mention the Twitter feeds @RomneysBinder and @Romneys_Binder, are alive and well, the dot.com version of the meme has gone pretty much fully official. The newly claimed website now features a Tumblr-powered collection of Democrat-friendly policy papers: Romney’s policies toward young women, Romney’s policies toward working women, Romney’s policies toward senior women. The site is now slick and unapologetically political and unapologetically lacking in the of-the-Internet sensibility that the defines a meme in its more organic state. The cheekiness and sloppiness of the BindersFullofWomen Tumblr has been transformed, here, into yet another outlet for the publication of political literature. The cheeky has been claimed by the savvy.
FJP: That American Bridge thought to capitalize on the event certainly does reflect an evolution of sorts. That the site has much of a following isn’t very likely. Just look at the difference in # of notes on the binders full of women Tumblr, run by @HeyVeronica, and and the binders full of women Website, also powered by Tumblr but owned and run by American Bridge. It’s an interesting juxtaposition.
Bonus: The DNC has taken advantage of the web to prank Romney as well. Not unlike negative TV campaign ads.
Afterthought: It’s a little bit difficult not be disheartened by all of the above. Interesting as it is to watch communication evolve, it seems that we’re merely updating our tools of humor and terror. —Jihii
Image: Via bindersfullofwomen.tumblr.com