In politics and advertising, the term astroturfing describes formal public relations (PR) campaigns which seek to create the impression of being a spontaneous, grassroots behavior. Hence the reference to the “AstroTurf” (artificial grass) is a metaphor to indicate “fake grassroots” support.
Mike Dunford, Bora’s fellow Sceince Blogs blogger, wrote in response to Bora’s post, Someone’s Trying to Play Us. In response to another comment Mike wrote Why astroturf disclosure legislation is needed.
We all need to research everyones claims. No matter how much we may agree or disagree with them. When I wrote the the first blog post Criticize Congress go to jail?, I didn’t even know who Richard A. Viguerie was.
Richard A. Viguerie of American Target Advertising, a direct marketing advertising company, pioneered political/ideological direct mail in the 1960s and 1970s. That marriage of direct mail and politics enabled grassroots Americans to participate in the political process to a greater degree than ever before and built the conservative movement that elected President Reagan in 1980.
Thanks to Kirk for filling me in on that. Mike Dunford does a much better job than I dissecting the legislation in question.
One of the cool things about blogs is I can update a post with more context as I learn about a subject and/or person. Plus other bloggers and the bloggers they know can inform me even more about the topic.
I’m still very concerned about blogs and free speech. People are radically altering political structures. They are using blogs as a new tool of immense individual power. Lots of powerful and moneyed people would love to stop that.
Sorry to use so many questions as post titles but this has been one of those weeks. (see Media hiding opinions behind the question mark? for the joke)