Election Over, President-Elect Trump--A Survival Guide, AUGNM-Style
As observers of the Internet we noticed three key trends and reactions last night and all through the morning.
1. Digital dynamism outpacing traditional media. The Internet/AP Newswire/New York Times Online/Drudge Report were frequently ahead of the television coverage all evening and called the deciding state, Pennsylvania, for President-Elect Donald J. Trump before the major networks, including CNN, MSNBC, Russian TV, Fox News/Fox business, Bloomberg, and BBC America did.
Takeaway: Do not underestimate the power of this vast communications medium and its instantaneous response to news that can outpace traditional mediums. Despite some Twitter stumbles, President-Elect Trump harnessed the power of the Internet. Likewise, his rival, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, used the Internet to identify her key voters and to deliver targeted messages to them.
Some Trump supporters did a dance in the end-zone. Others were more conciliatory.
Takeaway: The Internet reflects and amplifies our moods and our national hysteria. Express your feelings, but #Think before you post. It is valuable to realize there is a tomorrow after a hard-fought election with so much vitriol. It is valuable to realize that the people you love, work with and live among are still worthwhile and not "a basket of deplorables" or "lazy liberals" if they voted differently than you. If you need inspiration, watch Joe McGovern's The Other Side. And also this adorable Pedigree commercial.
3. Connection. While many Trump voters and Clinton voters (and NeverTrumpers in the GOP) used social media, email and text messaging/SMS to commiserate or celebrate with each other, several people reached out with a "keep calm and carry on" message. It might fall on deaf ears, as many people vowed never to heal, but never is a long time. We personally know of a social gathering in which a group of Trump voters applauded a Hillary supporter with whom they'd debated vigorously.
Takeaway and U Got Manners (UGM) Tip: Use your phone, Internet, and in-person interactions to connect with the other side whenever possible.
In the months ahead, remember (a) the power of the Internet and (b) the role each of us plays in using the Internet in a creative and productive way. There will be venting, unfriending, anger, sore winners, and memes aplenty. Eventually, perhaps, there will be healing, if we so choose. It's up to us.