Response 941770430

Back to Response listing

About You

1. What is your name?

Name (Required)
Gillian Dalley

Elected representatives

6. Members of Parliament are elected to represent local people’s interests in the House of Commons. How can the internet and social media help with this?

Digital communication is often seen as a means of speedy and accessible communication bringing people closer together as a result.Sadly it has the opposite effect. Those in power are able to send out thousands of messages to the public thinking it is a genuine means of keeping people informed and in touch. However they are always one-way messages. They rarely enable ordinary people to respond. This simply frustrates the public and makes them more sceptical and disenchanted about politicians' intentions of being more accountable to voters and more open to dialogue.

7. Does social media enhance the local link for MPs, or undermine it by involving them in more national and international discussions?

It all becomes a meaningless exercise because politicians don't analyse what the public says on social media (and don't allow the public any means of responding to politicians' messages)

8. Use of interactive technology is increasing. Is this likely to increase pressure for more direct democracy, such as crowd-sourcing, referendums and citizens’ initiatives?

Yes, I think citizens' initiatives already hare having an effect on public discourse. Sadly many politicians don't like this and refuse to take notice of them.

9. What will democracy look like in 15 – 20 years?

Fragmented - lethargic in parts, active in others. There needs to be much more time spent in schools on discussing democracy and citizens' rights and associated responsibilities.

Information about politics

10. Most people still get most of their news from television, although this seems to be changing in favour of online information. Traditional news organisations are also changing. What impact will this have on elections and democracy in general?

Online info may not grow as fast as seems to be the case. There may well be a reaction back in favour of print. There needs to be far more informed comment and criticism in place of the instant and biased reaction that characterises on line news.

11. How can online provision of information about elections be improved, including details of where to vote, how to vote and the results?

Phone and computer messages and updates; on-line (but secure) voting. The right of the individual to vote without pressure from anyone else (as may happen with postal and online voting) must be protected.

Political campaigning

12. Can we expect continuous election campaigning through digital channels – what would citizens feel about that and would it undermine or strengthen representative democracy?

Sadly, digital communication is all one way and will simply increase people's disenchantment with the big machinery of national parties. There needs to be debate between politicians and people - not just the one way torrent of messages we get at the moment.