Facebook for Democracy


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Facebook has become one of the few social media sites approved by members of Congress to be used for reaching out to the public.  Why not go one step further?

 

Facebook Poll and Question can be used to spark debate by members of the government and engage the public.  These tools can be used to get a good sense of the internet public opinion, at least, until the majority of people have joined Facebook. 

 

The policy of democracy by representation will always be in effect, but the representative will have a cheap and instant update from their public.  The public will also gain access to greater influence and hopefully transparency on policy. 

 

If the trend continues to move forward, Facebook then becomes a economical, lightweight vehicle for basic government functionality like voting, identification for drivers’ licenses, for fines and tickets.  Even congressional activities can be done over a webcam and votes submitted to Facebook in real-time, greatly improving efficiency and costs of the entire process.  Granted, in this brave new world, the Facebook places check-in feature would begin to feel very much like Big Brother.  There is however the benefit that Facebook could enable true Democracy and reduce the need for representatives to begin with.  Although to prevent mob rule, Facebook could still be used to elect more proletariat representatives, thus reducing the entry barriers and the typical campaign war chest required. 

 

With true representation, there is a question of true identity.  Facebook Connect is Facebook’s identity system which ties a Facebook user to his profile.  Should the Connect feature proliferate at its current pace across the web, they must move towards a more secure system. There is still no guarantee that one person does not have many profiles, no guarantee that a single person corresponds to his true profile, and probably many more tough challenges. 

 

Since industrial strength security measures are not in place yet, these speculations are fairly premature!  So don’t worry, Big Brother is not here yet.

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1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. bytex64
    Jan 10, 2011 @ 10:59:19

    > If the trend continues to move forward, Facebook then becomes a economical, lightweight vehicle for basic government functionality like voting, identification for drivers’ licenses, for fines and tickets.Emoticons cannot describe how sickening this sounds to me. I’ll try anyway. :< Nope, not really enough. If Facebook ever becomes a way to vote, you will have to come visit me in Sweden.

    Reply

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