Friday, March 16, 2007

Got Data? How Social Networking Can Give You More Accurate Data

"Data, its not a sexy topic."

With that bold statement the panel opens. Then Jacki Schechner, the moderator, states that they hope to bring sexiness into Data.

The Panel Members are as follows:
Stu Trevelyan
Mark Sullivan
John Simms
Jim Rowley

John Simms, of CMDI, begins by telling us to imagine Norman Rockwell's America of the early 20th century, where things were simple and local, and people saw their friends often because they all lived so closely, and politics were simple, because people knew the politicians, so as an analogy, data was already clear and analyzed and remembered, because this Data was held in the mind, now as people move around, even keeping track of an address can be complex. This movement of people creates a need to keep track of people as they move around. This data is needed to keep track of voters and donaters. This will allow the campaign directors to set places and good locations for fundraisers. This data must be organized so that it can be accessed anywhere at anytime, it also must be accurate, secure and recoverable. Mr. Simms lets us know the importance of this new type of data integration and storage for the new presidential campaigns.

Stu Trevelyan began by agreeing with Mr. Simms' assessment of the state of data spread these days. Then he states that the internet is what's really driving the web these days. He then discusses that a Web 2.0 approach can really be helpful, where you let your followers have a true part in the creation of your campaign, in the sense that you can almost keep track of people through a social networking sense, but in order to do this, you need an online supervisor who can recruit people into your campaign.

Next up is Mark Sullivan. Mr. Sullivan says that people want to eliminate unnecessary and extraneous databases, in other words, the less databases the better, with fewer upgrades in software, and therefor less software training. He suggests having your software vendors talk to each other, so that you can get software that is compatible. Also, as software becomes increasingly compatible with other manufacturers software, you should be able to pick the software that fits your needs, as you need it.

Essentially, this panel discussed how the Data is able to allow the voters to give feedback to the candidates, this is assuming of course that the data is used correctly, and organized properly. Through social networking, you can gain a new way to gather data. As Mr. Rowley said, it doesn't matter if your research shows that your followers enjoy golf or stamp collecting, that data may not be correct, and it may not matter then if you advertise in Golfer's Life or Stamp Collecting Monthly, you may still not be advertising your candidate to the people who are going to help your candidate, whereas with with social networking on the internet, you can accurately gather data about the individual people, not the groups, who care, and who are willing to donate to your candidate and help your campaign out.

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