Crowdsourcing Clegg Commentary

One perk of working for English PEN at the Free Word Centre is the annual festival, which includes the welcoming of a poet-in-residence.  Last year we had Ray Antrobus and Joshua Idehen dropping the rhymes. This year Kate Fox has been reciting poems to us at our desks.  Under the alternym Kate Fox News, she quickly writes and publishes poems about current affairs, such as the Pope’s visit and the party conferences.

Kate recited for us an experimental poem she wrote yesterday entitled “Nick Clegg’s Conference Speech Remixed“.  She has spliced some of Clegg’s soundbites together with realtime Twitter commentary.

Just imagine how different our country will be.
Not exactly a vision thing
Stick with us
It wasn’t a bad speech
Stick with us
Looks all so sincere
Stick with us
We’re stuck with U

I like this format.  For one, it includes a random, crowd-sourced element.  It is surprising how often the act of yeilding some control of your content to The Cloud or The Rabble yeilds something true and pleasing – Cybraphon and FOUND are the arch mongers of this type of art.  I also like the juxtaposition of the primary source material – the speech – with the commentary.  A poem that could not have been created before social media tools became ubiquitous.

3 Replies to “Crowdsourcing Clegg Commentary”

  1. That’s good to read, thanks Robert.

    What also intrigued me was the way that it also began to sound like it could be Nick Clegg’s internal monologue, contradicting his outer speech.

    So few discourses are really unified.

    Though politicians like Clegg are often calling for conversation and dialogue, they can rarely permit it as something that might be happening within themselves. The Greek chorus of a Twitter feed mirrors back their own refraction.

    I might try it in a prose block too, to see if it heightens the effect of it being one voice.

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