The MoveOn Effect: The Unexpected Transformation of American Political Advocacy

David Karpf, School of Media and Public Affairs, George Washington University
Wednesday, April 3, 2013, 4:10 - 5:30 p.m.
124 Mt. Auburn Street, Suite 200-North
Co-sponsored by the Joan Shorenstein Center on the Press, Politics and Public Policy

About the Seminar

Online politics is neither limited to "clicktivism" nor comprised of "organizing without organizations." In David Karpf's new book, he presents evidence that the new media environment has given rise to a new generation of political advocacy groups.

These organizations have redefined membership and fundraising regimes. They have established novel tools for gauging supporter opinion and pioneered nimble mobilization tactics that keep pace with the accelerated media cycle. These tactical innovations have not spread equally to older interest groups. Nor have they spread equally across the political spectrum—"netroots" political organizations are much stronger on the left than the right. In Karpf's research presentation, he will highlight key findings and ongoing puzzles regarding the nature and scope of the "MoveOn Effect" in American politics.

About the Speaker

David Karpf is an assistant professor of media and public affairs at George Washington University. His research explores the Internet-fueled disruption of American political organizing, with a particular focus on the new generation of advocacy organizations. Karpf also has firsthand experience with political advocacy, having served on the Sierra Club’s Board of Directors from 2004-2010. His research has appeared in several academic journals, and also been featured in a number of mainstream publications. His first book, The MoveOn Effect: The Unexpected Transformation of American Political Advocacy, was published in May 2012 (Oxford University Press). He tweets at @davekarpf, and his research can be found at and