Wednesday, 9 April 2008
Direct democracy and internet
From behind the computer screen GetUp members have become a potent force in Australian politics. Wendy Goldstein from Macquarie University brought this to my attention. Get Up, Action for Australia is a new independent political movement to build a progressive Australia. It brings together like-minded people who want to bring participation back into the Australian democracy. The website provides updates to the more than 280.390 members online and opportunities for bottom-up participation e.g. on Climate Change, Iraq or Tibet. For instance today the Australian Prime Minister has arrived in China, amid continuing international protests over China's crackdown in Tibet. Through GetUp almost 55,000 Australians signed the petition to Stand Up for Tibet. Rudd has since hardened his stance and said that he plans to raise the issue of Tibet during his visit. A member of the Australian Tibet Council is in China to represent citizens concerns. A daily blog from Beijing informs citizens what's going on. GetUp also has launched Chip in for Tibet! to raise money for continued work on the issue of Tibet.