A new subdomain on the US presidential hopeful Joe Biden's website allows anyone to make avatars that are supposed to “help elect Joe” by adding a picture to a template pledging to be “on team Joe.”
And now, people are doing just that – but it's highly unlikely that the Democrat is happy with the results of this attempt by his campaign to keep him relevant and fun online.
The whole thing has turned into a template for memes that are various degrees of funny – but some are definitely more biting than others.
Some tackle the issue of gangs and illegal immigration in the US, while others are as hilarious as they cut deep, featuring the likes of the Chinese president and Jeffrey Epstein – all, naturally, as being “on team Joe.”
These are just some examples of the way the idea has backfired, and they are the work of the 2020 campaign of US President Donald Trump, whose 2016 campaign that saw him elected relied successfully, and naturally, on social media.
In other words, the internet has been Trump's playground for a while – and as the New York Times writes, the current coronavirus situation in means that campaigning has had to move online – and that's not good news for Joe.
On YouTube, Biden has 32,000 subscribers – around 300,000 fewer than President Trump. And the content posted there is not getting much traction either, with most videos receiving no more than 10,000 views on a giant platform where the unboxing of a pack of Pop Tarts can easily beat that in a day. On Facebook and Twitter, Biden has 6.7 million followers combined, against Trump's 106 million.
The New York Times makes it seem like the problem is in Biden being forced to conduct his campaign online due to the major disruption of normal life caused by the coronavirus pandemic – while he would presumably shine face-to-face. But the truth is, as 2016 has demonstrated all too painfully for some – campaigns had moved online long before the pandemic struck.
The report makes an even bolder claim: that Biden's problem is not that he is “old or out of touch” – because both Trump and Bernie Sanders are roughly his age. But it's not when a politician is “old” – it's when they're out of touch when they suffer online. (See: avatar.joebiden.com)