From Iceland — E-Democracy Grows In Iceland

E-Democracy Grows In Iceland

Published November 17, 2011

A new website was launched on Austurvöllur today which hopes to bring elected officials closer to their constituents, while at the same time encouraging voters to make their voices heard directly.
The site, Betra Ísland, is a petition site of sorts – constituents post proposals that they would like to see taken up in parliament, and others can vote these proposals up or down. It is also very closely linked to Facebook, so that data can be shared across social networking sites more easily.
Gunnar Grímsson, one of the spokespeople for the project, spoke to attendees modestly at the official unveiling, which took place in a tent in the park in front of parliament. “It isn’t a great or important thing by itself to open a webpage,” he said, “It’s just done this way, and I hereby declare the website Betri Ísland open.”
Gunnar added that the site will be able to produce a lot of material that members of parliament could use for their own good, “despite the fact that the ideas came from the general public.”
The site is more or less based on the same concept as Betri Reykjavík, only on a parliamentary level. Slowly but surely, Gunnar said, members of parliament might start using the internet.

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