No Net Gains for Party Politics

[As ever, you can read this on the BBC News technology pages, and Alan Connor kindly reminded me of his excellent analysis after the 2005 election that made a similar point.]

The next British General Election will almost certainly be called the first ‘real’ internet election, on the grounds that the ‘internet election’ of 2001 happened when relatively few people had home network connections, while the 2005 poll took place before the social media explosion brought us Facebook, MySpace and a growing belief that anyone who is tired of twitter is tired of life.

One unfortunate consequence of this will be that anyone who claims a passing acquaintance with the network world will be called upon as a pundit, commentator or ‘expert’ to interpret the parties’ online activity and tell an eager public who is ‘up’ and who is ‘down’ when it comes to internet campaigning.

I know this is the case because I’ve already been asked myself, and a well known technology consultant of my acquaintance is being lined up for the role too.

Continue reading “No Net Gains for Party Politics”

Fools rush in…

The House of Commons Culture Media and Sport Select Committee recently issued a call for more regulation of online content, and I wrote about it for Index on Censorship

It would be nice to think that the latest call to ‘do something’ about online content from the Culture, Media and Sport Select Committee was grounded in some new development that made it trivial for websites to identify adult-oriented content, an online identity system which reliably linked social network profiles with age verification for all users, or the release of a user-friendly but unbreakable watermarking scheme that could identify copyrighted material whenever it appeared on an Internet-accessible computer.

Because the alternative would be that a bunch of MPs has decided the best way to get some publicity at the start of the summer recess, when newspaper editors are starved of ‘serious’ stories, is to announce that the Internet is like the Wild West, and children are constantly exposed to unsuitable material on YouTube, reveal intimate personal details on Bebo and surf the web looking for pro-anorexia or suicide support sites.

read the whole thing here.

My bookmarks for July 23rd through July 30th

Here’s what I tagged on between July 23rd and July 30th:

I saw this…

Here’s what I’ve tagged on on %date%: