Viral video creator unrepentant

The creator of the “1984” mash-up video, which promotes US presidential hopeful Sen Barack Obama by attacking his rival Sen Hillary Clinton, was an employee of the firm that designed the Obama website.

Philip de Vellis, a strategist with Blue State Digital had his employment “terminated” after learning he was about to be unmasked by the Huffington Post. He then defended his actions in a posting on the blog.

I made the “Vote Different” ad because I wanted to express my feelings about the Democratic primary, and because I wanted to show that an individual citizen can affect the process. There are thousands of other people who could have made this ad, and I guarantee that more ads like it–by people of all political persuasions–will follow.

This shows that the future of American politics rests in the hands of ordinary citizens.

The campaigns had no idea who made it–not the Obama campaign, not the Clinton campaign, nor any other campaign. I made the ad on a Sunday afternoon in my apartment using my personal equipment (a Mac and some software), uploaded it to YouTube, and sent links around to blogs.

The specific point of the ad was that Obama represents a new kind of politics, and that Senator Clinton’s “conversation” is disingenuous. And the underlying point was that the old political machine no longer holds all the power.

The video uses footage from a television commercial for the first Macintosh computer which portrayed the then-dominant IBM personal computer as the Big Brother from George Orwell’s novel 1984.

But what will be the impact of the video, and the unmasking of de Vellis?

On the Huffington Post blog, commenter “vectorbabe” puts it well:

…what I find amazing is how the liberal video/bloggers can’t seem to figure out whom the real enemy is.

Sure enough, with as much as a year and a half before the presidential election, liberals find nothing more fun than sniping at each other.

This is why Bush took office for two terms.

The modification of the commercial was clever. But it would have been more clever to aim the barbs at Bush Co.

De Vellis’ original upload has been viewed almost 1.9 million times on YouTube, but others have uploaded the clip too, putting the total number of views at well over two million.