Just as US parties and candidates are embracing all communications technological, and Labour leadership hopefuls are experimenting with social media, it seems the Liberal Democrats are in retreat away from the Internet. Dizzy bemoans the death of another blog and I agree, but also note the lack of enthusiasm within the party to keep it going. Rob Fenwick, who runs the Liberal Democrat Voice, says in his post that he no longer has time but no-one else has come forward, so the e-presence is simply their website and the Lib Dem blogs network. The loss of 'the voice' is that central place where many news and views were collected and disseminated, so in terms of creating an online supporters' community this is a backwards step.
Similar negatives can be levelled at the Ming Campbell blog, started with little fanfare on Feb 10th 2006, but which is only really a blog in style. The entries are impersonal, slightly more attractive than press releases (they include videos etc) but seems to attract very little in the way of comments and does not offer dialogue to visitors. 'LibDem blogs' still collects various postings together but it is simply a database that takes visitors to the host blog. So it seems, despite the potential the Internet can offer to parties with limited funds that the LibDems are missing the same tricks as their larger counterparts, more shovelware anyone?