The news that John McAfee (and possibly Mark Cuban?) may be joining the race for the presidency raises inevitable comparisons with two other high-profile IT magnates who threw their hats into the political arena: Ross Perot and Kim Dotcom.
While some may hope that an IT entrepreneur will ensure a campaign focused on tech policy, history suggests a real risk of the candidate becoming bigger than policies. Unfortunately, a background in IT offers no assurance that these entrepreneurs are better equipped than any others to compete for or hold elected office. It is hoped that if McAfee or Cuban does enter the 2016 US presidential race, events will play out more in line with Perot’s 1992 presidential candidacy than Dotcom’s disastrous foray into New Zealand politics in the 2014 general election.