The appearance of the Internet has changed both the way we perceive the information and the way we use it. There were many discussions whether it is good or bad, but the experience shows it has more positive influence than negative. Our generation has gone through the broadcast era that was characterized by passive information perception, and we proceeded to the digital era, where communication is instantaneous and interactive. Our new generation has developed along with the Internet; we expect even more active continuous participation.
This intensive evolution regarding the development of new communication patterns is useful not only for the citizens as a means of general communication and comfort. The Internet has provided the governments of many countries with an opportunity to function in a more engaging, innovative, and cost-effective manner. Many businesses recently have integrated such tools as LinkedIn, Twitter or Facebook in their marketing efforts with the aim to reach their customers faster and directly breaking the wall of the official curtain.
Considering the government context, the aforementioned tools are similarly used to engage with the goals of the citizens more openly and actively. They are able to collect their ideas and feedback by making people aware of the availability of various public services. Citizens have a chance to reach out broader audience through those non-traditional channels.
With the help of the Internet, social media facilitated to return the power to the citizens. Those widely available and comparatively inexpensive tools ease the organization of various campaigns and events. The appearance of such new technologies and methods has contributed to empowering the citizens as they can improve their governments’ accountability and responsiveness faster and more efficiently.
The Internet itself, in this case, has a couple of important implications. First, it should not be studied as such, as it operates through various mechanisms that are quite easy to understand and quick to use. Second, there is a possibility to compare the Internet with other communication technologies. For example, if we consider the pre-election campaigning in various countries, there is a lot of advertisement about various political parties on-line.
The Internet gives not only a chance to analyze the government candidates, for example, it is more independent source of information, which allows to draw more critical pictures of the political manipulations especially when we speak about developing countries. The oligarchs or their groups usually own TV and radio channels; thus, those media show only the news favorable to their owners.
Another great example of the Internet usage is its application in the election voting system. It is not only time-saving but also it is even environmentally friendly process as we do not deal with tones of ballots that are thrown away to the archives for dust absorption.
To conclude, disaggregating the Internet, we can anticipate the consequences as with its help, it is much easier to accommodate the interaction effects between the citizens and the country authorities; it develops democratic principles of the society. However, at the same time, it is also impossible to disentangle the Internet’s consequences in terms of real life politics in comparison with other communication technologies.