The Rise of Open-Source Politics

New web-based tools are facilitating a different way of doing politics, one in which we may all actually, not hypothetically, be equals; where transparency and accountability are more than slogans; and where anyone with few resources but a compelling message can be a community organizer, an ad-maker, a reporter, a publisher, a theorist, a money-raiser or a leader.


Josh Koenig, one of the twenty-somethings who cut their teeth at the Dean campaign and a co-founder of Music for America, says, "We're only seeing the first drips of what is going to be a downpour." When he told me that in most high schools in America, students are using the web to rank their teachers, I thought that was a bit of hyperbole. But then I discovered, where more than 6 million ratings have been posted by students on more than 900,000 teachers at more than 40,000 American and Canadian middle and high schools. That's triple the number from one year ago, covering about 85 percent of all the schools in both countries.

Just imagine when they take that habit into their adult lives, and start rating other authority figures, like politicians and bosses. The future is in their hands, though the rest of us will be taken along for the ride.

from the excellent and well worth reading article by Micah L. Sifry