do they know where to find it?

Has this been the TV election or the internet election? Or perhaps, both. The current poll surge for the Lib Dems was naturally put down to the first ever TV debate but many detected changes reported through the traditional media after the manifesto launch. However, there are those who argue that the rise of (yet) another Facebook phenomenon was starting to have an effect. Then this morning we have the printed press with an assault on Clegg’s popularity, perhaps trying to reassert their role in ‘deciding’ election outcomes. I’ve been encouraged by the response this morning that suggests that people can see through smear and innuendo (not that scrutiny of financial matters is unimportant) including political bloggers with other tribal loyalties. I think what we see here is a much a battle between different forms of media for the position of top dog as we do between parties with different policy ideas. And the more the printed media make such attacks, the more the web-based media will grow as the vehicle for anti-establishment backlash. I think the challenge for us is to continue to push for positive engagement in every arena but especially so on the web. Throughout the decade, we Christians have been taking our message of hope and reconciliation seriously through blogging and social media. There are some outstanding examples of thoughtful engagement including Dave Bish, Adrian Warnock, Mark Meynell, Marcus Honeysett and the Church Mouse. The challenge is to get involved beyond our natural territories- to become influencers not simply reinforcers. One thing seems clear, people are looking for something different- call it hope if you like. Do they know where to find it?


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