User-generated political parties

Nice development for digital politics in the “ooh-arrghh” west of England. A new political party, the Social Liberalists,  was officially registered by the Electoral Commission end July.

It’s been created by 18 year old Ben Lewis and some of his school mates, as reported in the renowned Western Morning News of Plymouth.

Interesting to see how instrumental digital has been in the formation of the party. According to the founder, the ideas for policies and manifestos only came about because he and his friends had been listening and debating for quite a while on online forums and on websites.

Aside from the ongoing use of internet voting in elections, I wonder if the shaping of future party manifestos and ongoing govenrment policies could indeed use digital to canvass public opinion a little more. This would allow for a more bottom up approach to political priorities.

An example: it was recently announced in the UK that knife crime has overtaken terrorism as the No 1 priority for the Metropolitan Police. Couldn’t we easily use use a facebook poll to let the public decide this sort of thing.

Depends if you’re a pluralist or elitist I guess…