Today, we were live tweeting the Brookings Institute event called "How Social Networking Can Reinvigorate American Democracy and Civic Participation." Here are some of our takeaways from both the Twitter conversation and the panel participants. We cite Twitter screen names where appropriate.
- @CRANDIEBERRY: Should students be taught to tweet and other social media manners in civics class?
- Diana Owen, a political science professor and the author of a paper that this panel was designed around mentioned a couple of key points, especially for CivicSource followers. Talking about the digital divide does, she thought that a high-quality civic education could close this gap. As for the 2012 election, the content will remain the same, but there will be less formally trained journalists, which could be either a good or a bad thing depending.
- Mindy Finn, Partner at Engage - Because of the push for views and the lack of fact checking, bloggers have misrepresented what actually happens in the world. Regardless, being part of the online discussion is a form of engagement and should be viewed as such.
- Lee Rainie, Director, Pew Internet & American Life Project - Social media can move people forward on the spectrum of engagement, even when starting from the most basic level. "General trust in society is moving away from big institutions to networks."