A year as tumultuous as 2017 can only prompt soul searching, and there was plenty of it as federal MPs made their way back to their families for Christmas and prepared themselves for the organic focus group feedback politicians generally get over the summer as they make their way around seasonal social gatherings. Weary Liberals worried about the negative poll trend, the grinding year just elapsed, and those Nationals roaring unpredictably at one another, like a bunch of bulls in a paddock.
It’s been a grim year in federal politics. Anyone watching knows it. Voters surveyed for the last Guardian Essential poll of 2017 gave politics an emphatic thumbs down, and they weren’t hopeful 2018 would be any better. Tired of banging on about the symptoms of dysfunction in my own ecosystem, I wrote a long essay in the middle of the year in which former protagonists, politicians and staff told their stories in candid but not self-pitying terms.
When I was a kid, I had a kaleidoscope that provided endless fascination as patterns formed and reformed. Watching the power structures in the Labor party is a lot like watching patterns in a kaleidoscope – the dial shifts a couple of degrees and all of sudden you are looking at something else. At its simplest level, what’s happening in the Victorian ALP right now is one of those kaleidoscopic shifts, except it’s not hypnotic, gentle and mildly mesmerising, but brutal and highly disruptive.
Muck Rack makes it simple to find people, tweets, or articles that mention any name, keyword, company, hashtag etc. We've compiled this guide to help you make the most of your search.
Selecting a term
Start searching tweets, articles from media outlets, articles mentioned in tweets, journalists'
names, titles and bios with some suggested searches:
Companies or Topics (e.g. iPhone, Microsoft)
Phrases (e.g. "cloud computing") — use quotes to keep the terms together
Twitter handles (e.g. @username) — returns those who have mentioned or replied to
Names (e.g. "David Pogue")
Hashtags (e.g. #sxsw, #london2012)
Bio details (e.g. vegan, Olympics, father)
Muck Rack's Advanced Search allows for many boolean operators.
Find results that mention multiple specified terms, use AND or
+. For example, ensure each result contains both Elon Musk and Mark Zuckerberg by
searching Musk AND Zuckerberg or Musk + Zuckerberg.
Use the operators OR or , to broaden your search when you'd like either of
multiple terms to appear in results. (This is the default behavior of our search when no operators
are used). For example, results will contain either cake or cookie by searching cake OR cookie or cake,cookie
Use NOT or - to subtract results from your search. For
example, searching Disney will yield results about the Walt Disney Company as well as Walt Disney
World Resort. To exclude mentions of Disney World, search for Disney -World or Disney
When using one of these operators with a phrase, enclose it in quotation marks. For example, you can
find results about smartphones excluding Apple's iPhone 4S by searching smartphone -"iPhone
Exact case matching or punctuation
If you're searching for a brand name or keyword that relies on specific punctuation marks or capitalization, you can
find results that match your exact query by adding matchcase: before the keyword you're searching for, like matchcase:E*TRADE .
Use parentheses to separate multiple
boolean phrases. For example, to find journalists talking about having fun in Disney World or
Disneyland, search for ("disney world" OR disneyland) AND fun.
An asterisk can be used to search for any variation of a root word truncated by the asterisk. For example, searching for admin* will return results for administrator, administration, administer, administered, etc.
A near operator is an AND operator where you can control the distance between the words. You can vary the distance the near operation uses by adding a forward slash and number (between 0-99) such as strawberries NEAR/10 "whipped cream", which means the strawberries must exist within 10 words of "whipped cream".