EXCLUSIVE: Gould and Lammy at Labour blogging meeting

New Labour guru and Freud Communications non-executive director Philip Gould is adding his weight to Labour's efforts to have a stronger voice in the blogosphere.

Lammy: links with Obama
Lammy: links with Obama

PRWeek has learned that Gould was present at a ‘new media breakfast’ meeting which took place in London this morning.

Also present was David Lammy, the Labour MP with the best connections to US president-elect Barack Obama.

The meeting was convened by Derek Draper, who is overseeing the party’s blogging initiative. It was attended by an assortment of Labour-supporting bloggers, PR professionals and political campaigners.

It is understood that Gould acknowledged that the party could not attempt to control bloggers in the same way that Labour spin doctors tried to control the media under Tony Blair’s premiership.

A source told PRWeek: ‘He stood up at the front of the room and said the New Labour command and control structure that he helped create is now obsolete’.

But the main purpose of the meeting was to hear from Blue State Digital, the US-based company which managed Obama’s online operations and is opening a new office in London. Blue State Digital’s Thomas Gensemer and Joe Rospars are said to have provided tips on how Labour can use the internet to win the next election.

A handpicked selection of 77 individuals were invited to attend the meeting and around 60 are thought to have attended.

Those who were invited but could not make it included Weber Shandwick European CEO Colin Byrne and Google European comms director D-J Collins, but both are understood to be fully behind of the initiative.

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