Loic Lemeur is obsessed with the idea that bloggers are the fifth power, that they are nowadays politically the most influential group. Yesterday he invited an international political especialist, Hans Rosling. And today the star was Shimon Peres, former prime minister of Israel. Politics was again the main subject. But is this what bloggers at the conference were expecting to hear?
I am afraid not. Bloggers are much more interested in technology than in politics. You can watch our top blogs, both in France and Spain, and the most influential blogs are addressed to geeks, not even to the YouTube Generation. They are happy to hear Marc Canter saying that politics is bullshit. They also want to hear people saying that newspapers are dead. They might also want to know how to make money with the Internet, or the Web 2.0, but they are not so interested in politics.
What happens then? Firstly, France is different. Politics is everywhere in this country, which explains Lemeur’s obsession with this subject. But the real Internet, the real blogosphere is not so interested in Ségolène Royal or Nicholas Sarkozy. Not even Simon Peres. I saw some faces of frustration and many chairs were empty during his conference. It is a pity. I would prefer a politics-oriented blogosphere, I would love to have many Escolar.net or Daily Kos, but reality is different.
Bloggers are influential but their influence is more clear in technology products. I am mostly unconvinced that we bloggers can change governments. I am even sure we wouldn’t even change 1% of votes. Can that change? Possibly, but not now, not even in the next 4 years.
(added at 15.00) It seems I am not the only person worried by the exaggerated political emphasis of the conference. I admire the way Loic organizes this conference and the high level of people coming either to hear or to talk, but I also think the French politicians are not interesting for most ot the people in the room. A possible solution could be to create a collaborative program for next year’s event so that we could suggest Loic not to bring these people 😉