Turning inner space into outer space

January 18, 2012

Politicians turn social media into a public relations exercise

When the premier of British Columbia promised to engage the citizens of the province with her Facebook page, many people thought that meant she would be willing to discuss the issues of the day with them. But a study by Integrity BC found otherwise:

Despite asking British Columbians to share their ideas or to join the conversation to make B.C. better, most of (Christy) Clark’s posts in December focused on more banal subjects such as how to make Christmas turkey stuffing or if ET exists.

A breakdown shows that Clark conversed with users a total of 24 times and just twice spoke about an actual policy issue.

I suppose we could look at it as yet another broken promise by a politician, but really — how many of them use social media as anything more than a public relations tool?

In this respect social media has been a big disappointment. Politicians who truly did engage with citizens would likely take a few lumps, but in the long run gain much more respect.

Clark is squandering an incredible opportunity to involve more people in the political process that affects their everyday lives.

Link: Clark breaks word with Facebook users