Barack Obama's website launched social networking software today, as a way to organize and mobilize supporters. Really. I already have a profile, in case you want to be my friend (I'm not even kidding. you can make friends and I really do have a profile. there is no place to put your relationship status, though, so I don't suggest using my.barackobama.com to find a politically active date).
I think it's a great idea to harness the power of web 2.0 toward politics. I think that Obama supporters are the most likely to go for it. At least, if I'm any indication. He also is using U2's "city of blinding lights" for a campaign song, so pretty much he's got me pegged. Too bad I don't have any money.
These developments raise some interesting questions, though, about the power of internet culture in politics. Many will argue that political blogs have had a huge impact in the '06 election, and others before, but '06 did not see the kind of assault on web media forms we are seeing already now. It will be interesting to see how other candidates use this technology and what effect it has on the election, especially given the narrow demographic of those who spend a lot of time on the internet.