2009-05-16

On Politics on the Internet

So today I was on facebook, when I saw an ad for a political party! Woah! Finally! Politicians are finally starting to wake up and use the internet! The ad in question was for the NDP in their upcoming provincial election therefore it must be targeted at Nova Scotians!
But that's not all! It seems all the leaders now have twitter accounts! Stephen Harper, Michael Ignatieff, Jack Layton and Elizabeth May are all tweeting. It's just press released compressed into 140 characters, but it's still nice to see that at least they're trying to abuse these new forms of communication.

The other interesting thing I have noticed about politics on the internet is the growing use of a forum style feedback/discussion portal. There is a site called onProbation which aims to make out government more accountable (at least according to the blurb) though it is run by the liberals I think. Sign up and vote for net neutrality!

This is an interesting sci-fi take on democracy were the people of this faction all have neural implants that constantly poll their opinions on decisions that are being made.

I think the internet has the potential to really revolutionize democracy. One main deference between modern democracy and Greek democracy was the scale of it. In Athens all the citizens of the city participated in the process because it only had 40 000 citizens. It was much easier to include every one's opinion and feedback and individuals could have much more sway. You couldn't have full democarcy before because Canada was just too freaking huge so we voted for people to represent us. With technology you could easily set up a system that allowed anyone who was interested and had internet access to participate in our governmental process.

2 comments:

Suzy said...

You have to recognize what the definition of "citizen" was in Greece, it exclude all women, and most of the population except for the elite, so it wasn't nearly as democratic as you have been lead to believe. In fact, slaves were actually better off than the wives and daughters of the "citizens" because they could be emancipated but the women were forever subject to the whims of the men in their lives. If you want to see true democracy, you need to come to North America, about 5000 years ago, this is the model that U.S. founding fathers initially based their democracy on, too bad they've corrupted it over the years.

tahnok said...

Sure less people were allowed to participate, but my focus is on the level of involvement of the people that were permitted to vote. It was generally more participatory if you qualified for voting, which is the big catch I guess.