PERPETUAL ENGAGEMENT: The Potential And Pitfalls Of Using Social Media For Political Campaigning (A new POLIS paper)

We live in an age where the citizen feels increasingly sceptical about and disconnected from those people who run our lives. Paradoxically, this is also an era when the communicative power of new media technologies mean that the potential for interaction between voter and politicians has never been greater. In this new POLIS report, to be launched at our Media […]

Share

Social media and democratic governance: the next decade (Wilton Park paper)

These are the notes for a presentation I gave as part of the Wilton Park conference on ‘media, social media and democratic governance’. This has been an extraordinary period for news and also for the way that news is created and consumed. I think that we see some substantial trends emerging are more than passing fads or exceptional circumstances. I […]

Share

POLIS in Perugia: three big debates on international journalism

You can now watch the full video of three fascinating debates that I hosted at the International Festival of Journalism at Perugia this Easter.

We talked about the Death of the Foreign Correspondent, in which I argued the Devil’s Advocate position that we DON’T need the classic parachuting foreign correspondent from three minutes in. I was debating with Mimosa Martini (Tg5), […]

Share

The message from Number 10: Can Downing Street ever be honest?

Sometimes it’s good to look back a little, to see forward. So it was clever to bring together three former Number 10 communications chiefs with the BBC’s political editor Nick Robinson to discuss how best for Downing Street to deal with the media. An excellent Institute For Government seminar heard from three familiar and thoughtful guardians of Governmental narrative-making: Tom Kelly, Howell […]

Share

Sky News Saved: But What About The Bigger Picture?

The Sky News deal is elegant in its ingenuity, but I doubt it will do enough to satisfy the critics of the full merger between Newscorp and BSkyB. Their fears were always about what Murdoch would go on to do with BSkyB rather than just the fate of one news channel.

Share

After Tunisia and Egypt: towards a new typology of media and networked political change

Social media did not ’cause’ the revolutions in Tunisia or Egypt. But if I want to find out where the next uprising in the Middle East might occur, that is certainly where I would look. Social media is now a useful indicator, if not predictor, of political change. And regardless of the causal relationship, social media does seem to be […]

Share

Governing In The New Media Age: Prime Ministers meet the Web pundits (WEF at Davos)

The only way we are going to forward the transparency agenda is if we can bring together the powerful with the new mediators. We need to put Prime Ministers and leading business folk in the same room as activists like Ushahidi and pundits like Clay Shirky, Jonathan Zittrain and Jeff Jarvis. That’s exactly what happened at Davos. I am chair […]

Share

Are We Ignoring the Dark Side of the Internet? Evgeny Morozov at LSE (Guest blog)

This report on a lecture at the LSE by Evgeny Morozov is by POLIS intern, Beth Lowell. From discussions of Iran’s “Twitter Revolution” to praise for Google’s decision to stop its censorship in China, the Internet is often heralded as a vital tool for democracy.  The United States government in particular has long referred to the Internet as a beacon […]

Share

The Net Delusion: Evgeny Morozov

“If it turns out that the Internet does help to stifle dissent, amplify existing inequalities in terms of access to the media, undermine representative democracy, promote mob mentality, erode privacy, and make us less informed it is not at all obvious how exactly the promotion of so-called Internet freedom is also supposed to assist in the promotion of democracy.” This […]

Share

What is an informed society? From Dubai to Davos

One of the positive things to have emerged from the whole Wikileaks story is a fresh debate about the idea of an Informed Society. The President of the World Economic Forum has said he won’t invite Julian Assange to Davos because of the criminal process facing the Wikileaks founder. But Klaus Schwab certainly recognises the significance of the whistle-blower website: […]

Share