“But the Internet is fundamentally changing politics, but in unflashy ways that parallel what has happened in the business world. After the dot-com crash, two types of businesses have principally thrived by using the ‘net: Businesses that do old things in new ways that rely on the Internet’s unquestionable ability to increase the speed and quantity of information flows, such as eBay, and old economy firms, such as UPS, that use the Internet to do what they’re already doing better, faster, and more efficiently—for instance, linking suppliers and distributors in just-in-time inventory systems.
In politics, it’s very much the same. What matters is using basic new technology to do old things better, and focusing on substance, not on how sexy a web page can be. “A campaign Web site is a receptionist’s office. The really interesting stuff is occurring on the back end and through email,” says Michael Cornfield, a George Washington University professor currently writing a book about the Internet and elections.”