Australian federal government online public consultation trials: Local learnings in e-democracy

Publisher:
Queensland University of Technology
Publication Type:
Conference Proceeding
Citation:
Communication, Creativity and Global Citizenship: Refereed Proceedings of the Australian and New Zealand Communication Association Conference 2009, 2009, pp. 1006 - 1023
Issue Date:
2009-01
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After its landslide victory in the 2007 Australian Federal election which was widely described as the YouTube election, the Rudd Labor government launched a series of trial public consultation blogs in 2008 as part of a commitment to e-democracy through the use of interactive Web 2.0 communication applications. At the same time, Barack Obama swept into power in the United States aided by Web 2.0 media including text messaging, blogs, YouTube, Twitter, and social networks such as Facebook which gained unprecedented levels of online political engagement. While e-democracy and e-government have been emerging concepts in many countries over more than a decade, these two experiences provide new information on the successes and challenges of online citizenship. This paper reports key findings of research into the Australian governments 2008 and early 2009 e-democracy efforts and compares these with US e-democracy initiatives including the Barack Obama presidential campaign and recent international research findings.
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