eric-loo

Internet’s only as good as its users

Dr. Eric Loo
Senior Fellow
School of the Arts, English & Media
University of Wollongong, Australia

Abstract:

The ‘democratising’ influence of the Internet is only as effective as the political culture and the people’s readiness to actively use the medium for meaningful engagement, and a mainstream media that is capable of being a watchdog on those in power.   This paper argues that: (a) we need to develop best practices in socio-political blogging; (b) the basic principles of ethical journalism  – transparency, accuracy, accountability, fairness, verifiability – should apply to blogs that claim to provide readers an alternative space to engage in honest intellectual exchange; and (c) Internet as a tool to promote fundamental reforms is only as effective as its users, and the environment that allows users to generate new knowledge and critically engage in the political process.