The Trail: A Daily Diary of Campaign 2008


Obama, Linking In Ahead of the Curve

Obama is getting linked in.


Today, Sen. Barack Obama became the first candidate to have a group on LinkedIn, the popular social networking site for working professionals. In a way, LinkedIn is the anti-MySpace. It's your online professional presense -- not a place for half-naked photos, endless riffs on Britney Spears or other musings bordering on TMI (too much information). The site has 14 million users, more than half of them in the U.S. The users' average household income is $139,000, said Kay Luo, the company's spokeswoman said, and about 75 percent are ages 29 and over. In other words, it's highly desirable demographic.

So far, Obama is one of two candidates -- Rudy Giuliani being the other -- with a LinkedIn profile. Obama's profile boasts his relatively short but nonetheless impressive resume: senior lecturer of law at University of Chicago Law School, state senator at Illinois State Senate, U.S. Senator. There's a link to his campaign site and to the page of his LinkedIn group. On the page, where users can grab a "digital bumpersticker" for their profiles, Obama touts his unique background: "I was fortunate to be able to grow up seeing America from varied viewpoints. My childhood was spent in Hawaii and Indonesia. After college I worked as a community organizer in the South side of Chicago focusing on improving living conditions in poor neighborhoods."

LinkedIn has an "Answers" feature, where users post questions such as "Can you recommend an individual or firm that specializes in PowerPoint design and language" and "What are your best tactics for landing new clients?" Early today Obama posted this question: "How can the next president better help small business and entrepreneurs thrive?" As of 11 a.m. EST, he's received 330 answers. One answer came from David Dykstra, district manager at Mosaic Sales Solutions in Michigan: "Do the best you possibly can to get out of our way, and remove any blocks that you can that keep us from achieving success. And remember, it's the small businesses in this country that make the economy work, not the huge corporations."

Said Steve Spinner, a Bay Area entrepreneur who's on Obama's national finance committee and serves as the senator's link to Silicon Valley: "The campaign takes pride in being on the cutting edge of technology."

-- Jose Antonio Vargas

Posted at 7:00 AM ET on Sep 12, 2007
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l would like to applaud Obama from the on-set and his fore-sight regarding this war. He was always against it and he said this has been a failed war, we need to redirect our attention to the right war, which is, WAR AGAINST TERRORISTS.

We need to channel all our attention to Afgan and to find Bin Laden and that is the true war that will really make us safe in the world.

Obama is an authentic politician, and he will truly bring about a total unity of all countries around the world and how will he do this? Because he understands how all these cultures and thinking of other people works, he will use diplomacy and good judgement to help move this country to it's original glory and bring more goodness to it.

I also want to thank the soldiers who are fighting to bring security around the world. You are truly brave and strong men and women. May god guide, protect, give you happiness and love that you all deserve. Thank you for your love and sacrifice for this nation.

Posted by: nkgilb | September 13, 2007 1:05 PM

Also, go, barack, go.

Posted by: drew | September 13, 2007 1:58 AM


Why should we "believe you me?" Your flimsy admonition exhibits no interest in the breadth and complexity of Afghani society, nor much any empathy for the Afghans themselves.

I applaud Brenda's sentiments, and wish as Americans, we could have overcome our sense of victimhood and self-pity post-9/11 to accomplish something more noble, humanitarian than two expensive, poorly planned and executed incursions... in some way, that was the real waste of those attacks.

Posted by: drew | September 13, 2007 1:57 AM


u have no idea about what's going on in Afghanistan, believe me. For example, they achieved record high production of opium this year. Now they produce more than 90% of it in the world. That place's screwed up and foreigners r very much unwelcome there. Try travelling there, and taste their hospitality


Posted by: jawabean | September 12, 2007 2:23 PM

Yes, Brenda, and thank GOd for OBAMA who was the only candidate brave enough to come forward with a plan to redeploy our troops to Afghanistan and the moutains between Pakistan where Bin Laden is building up the Taliban and Al Queda. This is the war that should have been fought afer 9/11 instead of allowing Bush/Cheney and Company to follow their own agenda.

In Obama, we have a true staesman and a critcal thinker, as well as someone who is educated in other cultures and religions. This is so important in dealing with foreign leaders, or individulas of any kind - enemy or ally. And yes, he IS a Christian but first and foremost, he is a citizen of planet Earth, as are all of us. With Obama as our leader, perhaps we can make strides to achieve the peace we all pray for.

Posted by: sheridan1 | September 12, 2007 2:12 PM

I am a strong, independent woman who believes that the United States has longed for a leader without biases and not years upon years of being wrapped around other political leaders fingers.

As I sit at my window taking in the breathless scenery from my small apartment in Virginia, MN, and my good fortune to have the freedom of choice regarding my Christian Faith with all of it's goodness, my mind returns to "360" with Anderson Cooper last night. Anderson pointed out some very positive steps that are taking place in Afghanistan to show the people that we, the USA, are more interested in ridding their country of extreme radicals that are out to harm the entire world. Our troops are building confidence in the Afghans by making improvements to new buildings, improving their lifestyles, giving them assets that will empower them with strength and perserverance as they develop their own troops to fight the radical Islamists. Is that not a "given"? Instead of pouring billions of dollars into warfare they are showing acts of kindness, genuine care and concern which is being shared my many in this tortured country.

Please, listen with your heart. The Afghans are beginning to welcome US troops over there now and this is our time to prove exactly what we (USA) are truly about. True democracy! Freedom to live under in a country that is led by honest and caring leaders. God Bless Anderson Cooper for bringing something positive to us regarding the Middle East. Also, God Bless all involved in the war to bring peace and justice to the people of all Arabic countries.

Sincerely, Brenda Brown
Virginia, MN

Posted by: b.brown1 | September 12, 2007 1:44 PM

Senator Obama is the only candidate with a straight forward solution to Iraq. All other candidates are dancing around the issue. It is obvious that Iraq does not have a military solution, and can only be resolved politically.

Given there is not military solution in Iraq, do you think U.S. forces begin a complete withdrawal now...... -------->

Posted by: PollM | September 12, 2007 11:26 AM

"Said Steve Spinner, a Bay Area entrepreneur who's on Obama's national finance committee and serves as the senator's link to Silicon Valley: "The campaign takes pride in being on the leading edge of technology.""

Mr. Spinner has apparently been in a deep sleep for the past 10 years or so. I'd like to be there when he sees his first iPod.

Posted by: mwfree | September 12, 2007 9:43 AM

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