Bigger than Spring

bigger_than_spring2This weekend’s ONDP convention marked many firsts for the party.  We test-drove our new “One-Member-One-Vote” election system, we elected our first female leader, and we had our first foray into the blogging world and the Twitterverse.

Political parties try to maintain control over their message, making it difficult to explore mediums that thrive on unmoderated real-time expression and conversation.  I want to personally thank and congratulate the party for trying these new forums.

The results surpassed all our expectations!  Our blog was viewed 5,000 times, over 800 people watched the live-feed and almost 1,000 ‘tweets’ were sent about the convention!  In fact, on Saturday, the Ontario NDP race was one of the top ten trending twitter topics in the world!  We were even bigger than ‘spring’.


Photo Credit: Justin Stayshyn

I want to thank a few people who participated in bringing the convention to the world through the web.  Justin Stayshyn was our back-end developer and Chief Tweeter (follow Justin here: @unionst).  Read Justin’s analysis here.  Steve Paiken was tweeting live from the convention floor (photo at right), and shot some great video of the race as it unfolded.  Ian Capstick helped spread the word and Michal Hay was the top #ndprace tweeter.

An interesting twist was the multi-partisanship of the Twitterverse at the convention.  All parties were represented as Liberal John Laforet blogged from the floor (and even shot a great interview assessing the political role of electronic media), conservative David Artemiw was tweeting insightfuly from the floor, and even Green Party activist Chris Tindal was participating in the discussion.  Chris wrote this comment on one of our blog posts: “Are you trying to make me wish I was there? If so, success.”


[…] on the success here. I’ll be posting more on the experiment once I get some resumes sent […]

[…] race website reports that their online and social media coverage was so successful that “even Green Party activist Chris Tindal was participating in the discussion.” Yep, even me! (As you no doubt already know, I’m the prime indicator of success for […]

  Dave Meslin wrote @

Haha. The “even” part was referring to the “Green” part, not the “Tindal” part (although Chris, you are famous in my heart). I see a lot of unnecessary animosity between parties but the most disturbing, for me, is that between the Greens and NDPers. The former often see the latter as socialist union-puppet dinosaurs and reversely, the Greens are seen by dippers as eco-capitalist naive vote-splitters. I find both views to be simplistic, unhelpful and even destructive. So it was nice to see that even the Greens were there. And even Chris Tindal. ; )

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