Trust through doing: 3 links

10 January 2016

3 just-about-related links on the subject of trust and clicktivism:

  1. Back in March, I saw Ethan Zuckerman talk at The Impacts of Civic Technology Conference. The talk was about mistrust as an untapped force. He mentioned 4 ways to change society: markets; laws; making things socially desirable; and by making something easier or harder to do (e.g. using code and good design to make something easier).

He went on to suggest that, if there is no trust - if people don’t believe that the organisation trying to change stuff is efficacious - just making things easier is not enough.

He also talks about mistrust as an untapped resource and can be a good trigger to get people to act (and, in turn, make them trust more).

Video: ‘It starts with a click’ by Ethan Zuckerman

  1. Nick Pearce, from the Institute for Policy Research at the University of Bath, blogged last week about political parties. He suggests that mainstream parties are the wrong shape for a networked world (and that ‘anti-system’ parties have understood this first). It includes this quote:

In order to address the legitimacy crisis, parties will have to integrate these alternatives with established institutional mechanisms … they will have to find a way to close the gap between an increasingly horizontalized public domain, on the one hand, in which critical citizens, societal organisations and political actors operate on a relatively equitable footing in real and virtual networks, and the vertical structures of electoral democracy and party government, on the other, which continue to be organised hierarchically and top-down. It is not easy to see how this can be accomplished.

Blog: ‘Yes, we can? Renewal vs remorseless decline of political parties’ by Nick Pearce

  1. I fell down a wiki hole and ended up reading about the Clarion Cycling Club and Robert Blatchford. Blatchford was a journalist and campaigner in the 1890s who aimed to get people engaged in politics by socialising and doing stuff in their communities.

The cycling club was one of a number of institutions inspired by Blatchford’s newspaper ‘The Clarion’.

As well as the cycling club, there was the ‘Cinderella Movement’ where readers organised groups to provide food and entertainment for the children of the slums.

Book: This seems to be the only modern biography of him