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Saturday, February 04, 2017

Should Social Media Be Used As Government Tool To Gauge Public Opinion?

BERLIN – When Berlin resident Bill Todd came up with the concept of renaming the town’s newest park for a popular mailman, one of the first things he did was share the idea on Facebook.

The positive comments posted by his social media followers were enough to convince him to launch a more formal effort. He placed petitions in local shops and used Facebook to promote the cause. It was there he informed the online audience of his plans to share the signatures he’d collected with the town council last month.

While a number of community members supported Todd and the idea of a “James Tingle Park,” Berlin Mayor Gee Williams was critical of what he considered the effort’s roots in social media. He says during his eight years as mayor it’s the only time his first indication of an issue came through social media. Platforms like Facebook typically don’t mean much to him as mayor.

“I give little to no weight to issues of public debate or opinion that are transmitted by social media,” he said.



Anonymous said...

No....Most all Towns post the night for Town Hall Meetings, the proper procedure would be GO TO THE TOWN HALL MEETING with the Commissioners present and present your suggestions! Some folks post comments just to post....need to make sure the feedback comes from QUALIFIED RESIDENTS!

Anonymous said...

Creating more snowflakes. Who can get the most 'likes' wins and the quality of the artwork or project or idea is not what is judged.