Sinn Fein election blog…

Much more cleanly executed than the confused offering from the Assembly elections. Some purists may complain (justifiably in some respects) that none of the candidates are actually writing the blog themselves. But doing interviews with the candidates themselves gives it more of the conversational feel a genuine blog has. Shame the guys doing the hard work in the background are not in the foreground. It gives it an anonymous feel, that’s distinctly off-putting. Still, big strides from March!

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  • Pete Baker

    “But doing interviews with the candidates themselves gives it more of the conversational feel a genuine blog has.”

    That’s key, surely. It’s pretending to be a conversation but in fact is strictly in broadcast mode only.

    Chatty, slick, in a good PR-way, broadcast.. and probably ticking specific target issues in the individual interviews.. but still broadcast.

  • qubol

    its certainly better but it’s not really a blog. more of a magazine. I think the term blog gets banded about too loosely, in my opinion this is a website and thats fine, if that’s what you intended doing.
    Blogs are about interaction and this space doesn’t allow that for what ever reason (resources being a big one as the slugger team will well know).
    If I’m being really picky I would also point out that they are still using the rater tired design I complained about last time. Anyway, on the whole it’s still good but I would really like them to be doing better.

  • Mick Fealty

    There is a tough problem facing any political party getting into this sphere. Conversations are fine if you don’t have anything to lose, as a party, organisation, or public limited company. But I don’t see this as anything other than an interim solution.

    There clearly is a guiding intelligence to these interviews: the question about Sile De Valera didn’t come (directly at least) from the candidate. I’d only say that that guiding intelligence should come out from behind the corporate face and speak to the front of house as well.

  • Pete Baker

    “There is a tough problem facing any political party getting into this sphere.”

    There is indeed. But that’s a problem faced by the brand.

    The individual should be the point of contact and the source of the conversation.

    In other words. You can’t talk to a brand.

  • Glensman

    These interviews have all appeared in An Phoblacht over the past couple of months, mostly conducted by Ella O’Dwyer. Perhaps that explains the style of writing?

    As for the interview with Anna Prior, I spoke to Anna and she said that the interview was very informal and more of a discussion…

  • Mick Fealty

    Indeed. As Adriana points out also, you can’t tell porkies. Or promise something you’re not delivering. That applies to all parties btw, not just SF!!

  • Mick Fealty

    Gm, that’s exactly right… One of the things that kicked discussion off on Slugger were the transcripts of interviews done for the Future of Unionism paper. There is nothing wrong with putting these out in a blog format, or withdrawing the privilege of commenting – as we’ve seen with Slugger on occasions the familiarity of that can lead to gross contempt. I just want to know who is doing the pulling together, or at least fronting a group effort behind the scenes!

  • Shadrack

    The web site is entirely, promotional spin and hype. Nothing more and nothing else. It is a cynical and blatant attempt to con the electorate in to thinking it is, (and consequently “SF is”) something it is isn’t. Blinkered SF supporters will think it the site is fantastic and the naïve, lazy voter will happy to be told what to think. Everyone else will not like it’s overwhelming patronizing tone and see it for what is is.

    However…., this is the 21 century. We are living in the digital age and I think political parties are right to adopt the new means of getting their message across. I am certainly no fan of the Shinners and I think the website is crap but I do think SF is right to make the most of the Internet. In this respect, other parties should learn from SF. After all, PR and self-promotion is what SF does best.

  • Mick Fealty

    I see Michelle is not happy they are being entirely hosted outside Ireland. I’m not one to point a finger though, since, for entirely economic reasons, Slugger is hosted entirely stateside.

  • qubol

    well spotted by Michelle – Sinn Fein should really rectify this (although it would take time) keeping technical jobs in Ireland through supporting Irish industry should be a priority. Even the DUP are hosting in the south.

  • There has undoubtedly been a sea change in the type of candidates SF is standing these days, having said that there are a good few candidates who are either young, female or both, which these day is a good sign for any party..

    To be fair I feel these candidates will look reasonable impressive to the average RoI voter.

    As to the site, good as any.

  • Mick Fealty


    That’s fine in theory, but in my limited experience, hosting in Ireland costs an arm and leg compared to the US. Slugger would have gone under three years ago if I had had continue paying UK/Republic rates.

  • qubol

    “That’s fine in theory, but in my limited experience, hosting in Ireland costs an arm and leg compared to the US.”

    But Slugger is a completely different set-up to a political party. I know that the US is way cheaper than anywhere in Ireland but for a political party it can’t just be about cost. You can also hope for finding a host that shares your views and will hopefully give you preferential rates. Only yesterday I found a host in England that gives substantial hosting discounts to charities.
    I would guess though that when it comes to election spends Sinn Fein aren’t the only sinners in this department. I wonder how many parties send their election material printing to China?

  • Firinne

    Try this for a blog from a SF candidate…

    Its my squeeky voice asking the questions in the video links.

    Kenny for a big upset in Roscommon-South Leitrim!!

  • jake

    your provo slip is showing again, fealty – if the dup had produced a better and more professionally executed blog than in the past would you have ended your comment with the approving words: ‘Still, big strides from March’. I think not. can’t help yourself can you?

  • Mick Fealty


    When someone does something well, it should be recognised. When it goes badly, the same.

    When I did a run down of the performance of the parties before the November 03 election, I put the DUP way ahead of anyone else. It still is in terms of design, but in other ways it has not grasped the changes in the web since. Sinn Feins design is still poor IMHO, but they are making experiments with the functionality. If they can figure how to do that well, the rest can come after.

    I dont mind taking criticism in the least. If the truth hurts it is most often worth baring than not. But you need to lace it with some falsifiable facts, if I am to take your accusations of bias seriously.

  • Marie Antoinette,,2068959,00.html

    Slightly off topic but The Gurdian shows how it should be done. The Provos are on all the kiddy sites looking for link ups (bebo etc). The Limerick/Quinlavan Provo piece could have done with some editing to get it right. Limerick should be good for these folk. Still, it is a bad thing when people vote for killers and brothers of killers. This is not parity of esteem but esteem of killers.
    What is Sinn Fein’s view on fox hunting btw? I am sure their West Dublin candidates would be all in favour, given the amount of feral horses out there.

  • páid

    The majority of Shinner candidates appear to be very fit-for-purpose.

    On message, well-rooted, in touch.

    Compared to the greyhaired property/planning honchos in FF/FG.
    And their youth wing wannabees.

  • German-American

    I’m surprised Pete Baker didn’t pick up on this gem, from the interview with Jonathan O’Brien (speaking of Space Race by Martin J. Collins): “It’s an excellent book. I thoroughly enjoyed it and, if I were to be honest, I would be quietly sceptical as to whether or not there actually was a US moon landing.”

    Perhaps someone who knows him could take Mr. O’Brien aside and explain that believing the “race to the moon” to be a superpower stunt is perfectly consistent with both history and the SF party line, but going over the edge into Apollo 11 denialism might not go down well with the reality-based segment of SF’s potential voter base.

  • darth rumsfeld

    the blog has a side bar seeking donations for the election campaign. Pity it doesn’t display the repsonse. Might we expect one from Mr. P O’Neill giving £26 million in uses Northern bank tenners?

    I’ll get me sash