UK News

Insights from the UK and beyond

from The Great Debate UK:

Rory Cellan-Jones on virtual democracy

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Direct, real-time communication among politicians and the public through social media platforms is reshaping democracy and the news media, but questions remain about how the fabric of society might change as a result, argued a panel at an event hosted by the BBC on Tuesday evening at Westminster.

The Web provides a de-centralised opportunity for users to communicate from various points on the political-economic spectrum, but gatekeepers are emerging who try and curtail the dissemination of information they find objectionable, suggested panellist Aleks Krotoski, who recently completed work on the BBC series "Virtual Revolution".

"Innovative social-media platforms start off being interactive, but then they can become broadcast tools," cautioned Rory Cellan-Jones, the BBC's new digital election correspondent.

The panel was chaired by Peter Horrocks, director of BBC global news, and included Pooneh Ghoddoosi, a presenter with BBC's Persian service and Peter Barron, director of communications for Google in north and central Europe. BBC is producing a series about the Internet titled "Superpower".

Will social media influence your voting intentions?

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brown_cameronA couple of government ministers, Andy Burnham and Chris Bryant, let the cat out of the bag this week that the general election will be in May.

So if the inclement weather has darkened your mood, cheer up — you’ve got a few months yet of political jaw-jaw and shadow electioneering as Britain’s political parties try to ingratiate themselves into your heart in a bid to snaffle your vote on election day.

Which dead celebrity would you tweet?

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FILM-BUZZ/An online Twitter seance kicks off in London on Friday, October 30, the day before Halloween, in an attempt to communicate with the spirits of dead celebrities.

Psychic medium Jayne Wallace will try and contact the stars, and will act as online intermediary between the living and the dead by tweeting any responses she receives.

from Reuters Soccer Blog:

Twitter might not be harmless fun for players

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The days when the details of transfer negotiations were closely guarded secrets could be coming to an end with the advent of the 'Twitter transfer'.

On Wednesday, U.S. national team striker Jozy Altidore all but announced a move to English Premier League Hull City on the micro-blogging site, keeping his fans updated while Hull remained silent.

from Mark Jones:

Towards the web 2.0 interview

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On Monday, Reuters arranged for UK Liberal Democrat leader Nick Clegg to be interviewed live by the social web.

We've been edging towards this with previous social media segments in Reuters-hosted NewsMaker events like those with Conservative leader David Cameron and World Bank President Bob Zoellick who have taken questions from Twitter and the like after making public policy speeches.

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