Posts Tagged ‘internet election’

Jon Bounds on the half-appearance of the internet election

19/05/2010, 08:05:32 AM

Will the General Election in May 2010 go down as the first ‘internet election’? No. The unusual — if not entirely unexpected — result has seen to that, but it was an election in which people using the social web changed forever the way campaigning works in the UK.

Talk before was of which party could “do what Obama did”; that is, use the internet to harness support, and to fundraise. Well, no one really did — and politics in Britain was unlikely to suddenly start to work like that: we’re too conflicted, too cynical and have too many choices. We sometimes have to make decisions about how to place our cross where the local and national aims seem flatly contradictory — it was never going to be a simple case of joining one Facebook Group over another. The web can handle nuance, even if our electoral system can’t.

There was significant grassroots activity though, and perhaps the best way to see the difference between us and US is to look at the difference between (‘Organising for America’) and (‘Airbrushed for Change’). One is a social network ‘lite’, directed at organising and nudging (very much in line with the theories of Richard Thaler) support, the other a crowdsourced Private Eye, with all the mix of clever satire and fart jokes that that might entail. (more…)

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