Everywhere in meatspace there is a Main Street. Pick a town, pick a city, pick anywhere, and there is probably some geographic equivalent to a "main" street. On this street you probably have any number of shops, restaurants, and other businesses. And the most amazing thing about all those businesses is that they are connected by a street. Not to be glib, but geography matters.
It matters in ways we don't necessary think about too. A Street is a powerful and long-lasting technology. A street allows the movement of goods, and connections amongst people in meatspace. This makes a street a powerful tool of expression. The Street is what allows people to vote in their districts and remain active at their gym, or to swarm and protest. Yet above all these myriad of uses, a street is a sign of an ordered civilization.
Why do I feel the need to belabor this point? The internet in all of its connective power lacks any organizational equivalent to a road. There are so many choices that are all right next to one another, yet there is nothing that connects one place in the virtual world to another. All journeys on the internet are "single vehicle" and thus are highly personal. I don't see the traffic headed to whatever location I choose to visit. I don't have to fight lines or other cars looking all the while at people's frustrated expressions.
Now most people see this as a good thing, and in most senses it is, excepting one, The internet for all its other self-organizing characteristics, cannot organize groups in the powerful ways a street can. It is impossible to drive a campaign wagon up and down the pathways of the internet, no one would see you. The internet is an infinite number of locations with no roads connecting them in an orderly fashion. There is no "in between," you are either on one site or on another.
This small fact, as innocuous as it is, is the downfall of all cross-border political causes. To put it another way people must be motivated by something outside the web, they must have an emotional connection with the politics at hand. And solid emotional connection only comes with geography.
Some will argue that people do donate and participate in cross border causes. They are correct, but my point isn't to deny those expressions. I am saying that these cross border donations are all made at the individual level. The people who donate don't know the others who make the same online donations and, as I stated previously they are invisible to each other. There is no emotional connectivity that would normally be provided by a street and seeing all those people in one place at one time.
The internet by its very design, will never be able to accommodate the organizational and political power that Main St. is able too, anywhere.