he stats are in for the first week of election work. Total of 886 visitors. 445 were first time.
We received one email submission this week from David Dailey, of Belleville. Obviously, he is a union/activist from his email.
We are very successful in pursuing questions for the site. It is interesting to note that people are not quick to participate on the site. However, when we use traditional methods of asking people what issues they want covered or of a concern, they will volunteer them.
We are handing out lapel buttons. I believe this is how people are getting to know the site. A press release went out and an advertisement is being placed in the Belleville Inteligencer.
People don’t seem to know too much about the local issues, often parroting concerns identified by political campaigns and the media. Roger Levac, a student in the e-journalism program, wrote a compelling blog.
This aggressive approach to seeking participation is perplexing. People seem to have a ready opinion, but for some reason, don’t have the impetus to express themselves. It is important to explore why that occurs. If e-journalism, or for that matter, e-democracy, is meant to work, then citizens must be ready to engage. But they don’t. Technology may facilitate or have the ability to facilitate democratic participation and social discourse, but if citizens are not motivated, then so what?
First posted: January 16, 2006