Saturday, April 17, 2010

Library of Parliament Series on Social Media

The Library of Parliament recently published a series of short articles on the impact of social media such as blogs, wikis, Twitter, etc.:
  • Social Media: 1. An Introduction (February 3, 2010): "This paper gives a brief overview of their evolution and development, looks at how the attributes of these media affect the way people interact online, and considers their potential social and economic impact."
  • Social Media: 2. Who Uses Them? (February 3, 2010): "This paper reviews recent statistics that demonstrate differences between older and younger Canadians, men and women, Anglophones and Francophones, immigrants and native-born Canadians, and urban and rural dwellers in their rates of Internet and social media use."
  • Social Media: 3. Privacy and the Facebook Example (February 8, 2010): "When people post personal information on social network sites, that information may be used in ways they do not realize. Concerns over what social media sites do with personal information and how they inform users led Canada’s federal Office of the Privacy Commissioner (OPC) to investigate the practices of Facebook, the world’s leading online social network. This led to changes in Facebook’s privacy practices, which were applied to the site worldwide. To illustrate the privacy concerns associated with social media and how these have been addressed, this paper gives an overview of the OPC’s investigation, the first major investigation any privacy authority had conducted into acebook’s practices."
  • Social Media: 4. Political Uses and Implications for Representative Democracy (March 22, 2010): "Social media offer innovative opportunities for political actors, political institutions and the public to interact with one another. Drawing on examples from Canada, the United States and the United Kingdom, this paper outlines how social media are currently being used in the political arena. It also discusses benefits and risks that have been attributed to the use of social media for political purposes, and explores the implications that the use of these technologies may have for representative democracy."
  • Social Media: 5. Parliamentary Use in the United Kingdom (March 25, 2010): "This paper focuses on innovative approaches that the Parliament of the United Kingdom is using to provide information, elicit feedback, and even allow respondents to communicate with one another. It is noteworthy that both houses of Parliament in the United Kingdom, as is the case in the United States, Australia, and the European Parliament, have been grappling with challenges related to the application of new technologies to institutions that evolved when communications technologies were far more limited. Examples from the realm of committee work include the question of applying the principle of parliamentary immunity to testimony delivered electronically rather than in person before a committee, how electronic input is to be stored and maintained to be able to respond to access-to-information requests, and how the identity of witnesses can be confirmed through electronic means. Yet, similar challenges existed when legislative committees first permitted the use of video conferencing as a way to hear from witnesses, or allowed 'walk-ons' in committee hearings conducted beyond the parliamentary base."

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posted by Michel-Adrien at 6:59 pm


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