During Marc Fisher’s live discussion last night, two comments submitted by members of the public stand out:
I voted for Deeds. The WaPo endorsement really helped. I started doing the research this weekend and was disappointed that the WaPo did not have a quick guide the issues. I searched for a half an hour and did not find a quick rundown of the candidates and the issues.
Also, Deeds had a wikipedia page about his past stances. That really helped. The other two did not have similar pages.
[T]he candidates should’ve had a Wikipedia page that listed out what they’ve done and the stances they’ve taken in the past. Deeds had such a page and as opposed to a campaign Website, a wiki page gives you a quick run down without the gloss.
What each person is referring to is “Political positions of Creigh Deeds,” a Wikipedia entry created in February by Venu Katta. Though it’s nothing fancy, and certainly not complete, this entry provides a simple, factual, unbiased (to my eye) cataloging of Sen. Deeds’ positions on important matters, thoroughly supported with citations.
I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: Wikipedia is going to play a large role in year’s Virginia elections. The campaigns that a) understand that, b) harness that and c) do so in a fair, unbiased way will reap the benefits. The campaigns that ignore Wikipedia or attempt to manipulate its information in a way that is anything less than fully truthful will be penalized accordingly.
Thanks to B.K. for the tip.