WEBCAMERON. Wrist-deep in...

WEBCAMERON. Wrist-deep in a sink full of dirty dishes, discussing his vision for a better country while continuously fighting off interruptions from his kid -- this is how Britain�s boyish new Conservative Leader David Cameron chose to appear in a new behind-the-scenes website launched this week. Cameron, who spoke today at his party�s conference and is profiled glowingly in this morning�s Times, is already a political phenomenon across the pond. WebCameron's mix of aggressive informality and smart technology adds to the intrigue.

Cameron does the dishes. Cameron discusses a speech he gave minutes previously. Cameron taps away at a laptop, while the camera pans in to reveal he is actually writing his own blog. The site�s creators clearly believe that the only production values that can inspire trust among cynical voters are no production values at all. Few politicians here in America have yet managed this trick of conveying a strong personal touch through new media. (I'd say John Edwards is an exception.) The only question now is how many of the 2008 candidates will do something similar.

--James Crabtree