The electronic window – who is writing the commentary

Bloggers blogging about blogs, online navel-gazing at its best/worst. So, what follows will either bore or excite.

Political blogging does affect elections; this is not disputed. Blogging often drives the news agenda, and those that get all their news and information from the internet are going stumble across blogs, whether deliberately or not. Those of us who blog regularly see a spike in hit rates at election times and when something really newsworthy is written about. This is no accident.

What is less certain is just what effect local blogging about local elections has. The reality is that however seemingly Herculean our efforts may be we are swamped by national news. But when what separates victory from defeat is numbered in handfuls of ballot papers then clearly an influence is magnified.

The blogosphere in Southend-on-Sea does not mirror the local power balance; it does approximate the national balance though. I am biased, but I think the best blogging comes from Labour, but the Tories do have a reasonable presence. The Tories have more bloggers, but their writing is not regular, and the quality is decidedly mixed.

I am somewhat embarrassed by my own numbers – which can be interpreted in a number of ways (for instance, do I actually have a life?) I think my blog has the most visitors, and this is a guess. I am not the most assiduous tweeter, and maybe I ought to do some sort of research there too.

Here is the state of play as regards to political bloggers in Southend-on-Sea – my apologies if there are any omissions.

author Party posts since elections address Last post
Cllr Julian Ware-Lane Lab 63 warelane.wordpress.com 21 July
Tony Cox Con 26 shoeburyblogger.blogspot.com 16 July
Nigel Holdcroft Con 25 nigel-holdcroft.blogspot.com 21 July
Matt Dent Lab 25 matthewsdent.wordpress.com 21 July
Cllr Mark Flewitt Con 18 markflewitt.wordpress.com 18 July
Neil Monnery Lib Dem 8 neilmonnery.co.uk 15 July
Paul Collins Lib Dem 6 paulcollins.mycouncillor.org.uk 10 June
Cllr James Courtenay Con 5 jamescourtenay.wordpress.com 18 July
Gray Sergeant Lab 5 graysergeant.blogspot.co.uk 22 June
Southend Fox Unaligned 3 southendfox.wordpress.com 2 June
Cllr Anne Chalk Ind 2 anne-chalk.blogspot.com 29 May

No UKIP bloggers, only Anne Chalk for the Independent Group. Paul Collins has retired his blog, so Neil Monnery is the sole flag-flyer for the Liberal Democrats. The field really does belong to the two major parties.

As the Tories adjust to life in opposition it will be interesting to see how their online presence develops.

My favourite non-Labour blogger in Southend? It has to be Nigel Holdcroft at the moment, whose writing is both intelligent and perceptive. I certainly do not agree with much that he writes, but I value what he contributes to the debate.

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4 Responses to The electronic window – who is writing the commentary

  1. We’re not counting the blog which Anne Chalk posted attacking Mike Assenheim, and then deleted after perhaps arm-twisting from the whip-less Independents?

  2. I think there has been at least two deleted posts. But no, I just counted what I could see.

  3. neilmonnery says:

    Just to confirm that your thought that your blog has the most visitors is inaccurate…

  4. neilmonnery: Maybe, although if it is yours that out-performs mine I could question whether yours is really a political blog, or a blog that occasionally has political bits in it. However, I did say it was a guess …

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